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Editor of The Journal of Negro History, author of The Education 

of the Negro Prior to 1861, A Century of Negro Migration, 

and of The History of the Negro Church 


Copyright, 1922 




THIS book was written five years ago and would have 
been published at that time, had not the high cost of print 
ing during the World War rendered its manufacture too 
expensive. A few pages have been added to bring the work 
nearer to the present date, but the leading facts as set forth 
herein appear as they were originally written. 

The purpose in writing this book was to present to the 
average reader in succinct form the history of the United 
States as it has been influenced by the presence of the Negro 
in this country. The aim here is to supply also the need of 
schools long since desiring, such a work in handy form with 
adequate references for those stimulated to more advanced 

In this condensed form certain situations and questions 
could not be adequately discussed, and in endeavoring thus 
to tell the story the author may have left unsaid what 
others consider more important. Practically all phases of 
Negro life and history have been treated in their various 
ramifications, however, to demonstrate how the Negro has 
been influenced by contact with the Caucasian and to em 
phasize what the former has contributed to civilization. 

The author is indebted to Mr. David A. Lane, Jr., who 
kindly assisted him in reading the entire proof. 


Washington, D. C. 
April, 1922. 























INDEX . . . 373 















Attorney for the Slave in the Somerset Case. 






A Negro Soldier in the American Revolution and later a 

distinguished Congregational preacher to white people in 

New England. 





The Liberator of Haiti. 

An Advocate of Freedom. 

xii Illustrations 



The Founder of the African Methodist Episcopal Church. 




An Antislavery Reformer. 





Prototype of Uncle Totn s Cabin. 







Built a century ago. 
FREEDOM S JOURNAL . . . 1 ; >~ 

A Negro Newspaper edited a century ago. 

A Secondary School in Mercer County, Ohio, admitting 

Negroes in 1842. 

A Fugitive disguised as her Master. 

An Agent of the Underground Railroad, 

A missionary Teacher of Negroes. 

The first actual Colonizer. 

Illustrations xiii 







An Author, Physician, and Leader before the Civil War. 






A Martyr in the uplift of the Negro. 


A Native of North Carolina, who lectured in the North 

against slavery. 










The Champion of Free Speech. 









A Champion of Freedom. 


The Defier of the Secessionists. 



xiv Illustrations 



U. S. GRANT 225 


PROCLAMATION . . .. 231 


Leading the Fifty-fourth Massachusetts Regiment. 


A Commander of Negro Troops. 






A Member of Congress. 

PI. R. REVELS 249 

United States Senator from Mississippi. 


B. K. BRUCE 251 

United States Senator from Mississippi. 


A Member of Congress. 


A Member of Congress. 


Acting Governor of Louisiana. 


The first mixed jury in the District of Columbia. 

R. T. GREENER 264 




A fearless Spokesman for his People. 


\V. ]-]. B. DuBois . . 276 



President of the National Association for the Advancement 
of Colored People. 

Illustrations xv 



The Home of Scott Bond. 








H. 0. TANNER S Christ and Nicodamts . . 300 



A Negro Teacher with Pupils of both Races. 




An enemy of prejudice in the Army. 


Receiving the Croix de Guerre in France. 


Secretary of the National Association for the Advance 
ment of Colored People. 


Chairman of the Board of Directors of the National Asso 
ciation for the Advancement of Colored People. 


A Preacher of the New Democracy. 

"A Defender of his People." 



BY COUNTIES, 1910 :)8-300 




THE ease with which the Negro thrives in centers of 
modern civilization, in contradistinction to the destructive 
effect of this influence on the belated peoples like the 
Indians, has evoked admiration and comment. In the 
beginning of the treatment of the role played The cu i tu re 
by the Negro in our history, then, it may be of Negroes, 
well briefly to examine the situation in Africa with a view 
to determining exactly what accounts for the facility with 
which the culture of the Negroes brought to Europe and 
America has. so easily fused with the culture generally 
known as that of the white man. Has the culture of the 
Negro anything in common with that of the western na 
tions, or is the Negro merely imitative, as is often asserted 
by many writers ? Since most historians in this field know 
practically nothing about the Negroes in Africa prior to 
their enslavement, it will be profitable to give their situa 
tion in that land at least a cursory examination. 1 

In considering the forces effective in making the civiliza 
tion of Africa it is well to note that although it is the second 
continent in size, it has such few inlets that it has the 

i For more extensive treatment see W. Z. Ripley s Races of Europe, 
J. Deniker s Races of Men, J. Finot s Race Prejudice, F. Ratzel s The 
History of Mankind, Franz Boas s The Mind of Primitive Man, 
Spiller s Inter-Racial Problems, C. Bucher s Industrial Revolution, 
Casely Hayford s Ethiopia Unbound and his Native Institutions, 
James Bryce s Impressions of South Africa, Leo Frobenius s The 
Voice of Africa, and G. Sergi s The Mediterranean Race. 


. !* it. 

2 1-he Negro In Our History 

shortest coast-line of all. Some historians will therefore 
inform us that owing to this lack of good harbors Africa 

Physiographic ^ as no ^ ^ ia( ^ through commerce, sufficient con- 
features of tact with the outer world to keep its civiliza- 

j.j on a b reas t w jth that of other continents. 
Although Africa has valuable land, it suffers from the han 
dicap of being in the main 
a high elevated table 
land with rapids and falls 
rendering difficult the ap 
proach from the outer 
world ; and the four great 
rivers, the Zambezi, the 
Niger, the Congo, and the 
Nile, are not sufficient to 
furnish facilities for 
transportation even in the 
interior. Africa lies in 
that part of the tropical 
world where, because of 
its peculiar location with 
reference to the directions 
of the winds, the climate 
is unusually warm and 
dry except in the region 
drained by the Congo, 
where the abundant rainfall produces conditions very much 
like those in other parts of the torrid zone. 

Because of these peculiar geographic conditions there 
exist various civilizations determined largely by the areas 
in which they have developed. For general purposes 
Africa may be divided into three zones. Stretching from 
African a little above the equator to the south of that 

civilizations, circle is the region of the heaviest rainfall 
and consequently the most abundant vegetation. There 


The Negro In Africa 

may be found swelling streams flowing through forests 
teeming with animals, natural crops, and an abundance of 
fruits serving as food for men, who on that account have 
no struggle for life. Above and below this zone are two 
others of less rainfall and consequently less vegetation. 
There it is necessary for man to cultivate the fields in 
order to make a living. Still farther beyond the limits of 


the last named zones are areas of much less and, in the 
North, of practically no vegetation on account of the lack 
of rain. In those sections man must earn a living by pas 
turing cattle and the like. 2 

It is evident, therefore, that since environment is the 
great factor in the making of a people, various civiliza 
tions have sprung up in these respective zones. Those who 

2 This has been discussed by Jerome Dowd in The Journal of Negro 
History, Vol. II, pp. 1-16. 

4 The Negro In Our History 

have lived under the equator where there is no struggle for 
life have not made much advancement. In that section it 
Environment has not been possible for necessity to become 
as a factor. ^ Q mother of invention. Those living in the 
areas requiring cultivation of the soil have made most prog 
ress. It has been necessary for them to bring under their 
control certain forces of nature to increase the food sup 
ply which nature in that zone niggardly yields. The dwell 
ers in the arid regions are handicapped by being restricted 
to merely one industry from which returns are obtained 
with increasing difficulty. While under such circumstances 
the achievements of the people may in one or two respects 
reach a high stage, they must remain a backward stock for 
lack of proper environment and opportunity. 

This situation throws much light on slavery and its con 
comitants in Africa. As there is- not very much of an 
effort to earn a living in the region under the equator, 
slavery in that section seldom extends beyond that of 
women who are usually attached to men as wives. A man 
Slavery in in need of labor purchases additional wives 
Africa. to supply that need, and a wife is usually 

worth so many cows. As very few slaves are required and 
there is often a scarcity of meats, cannibalism is practiced, 
as* the taste of human flesh does not differ materially from 
that of other animals. In the case of wars, therefore, when 
captives are taken they can be easily disposed of by sale, 
for the reason that they are not needed in the economy of 
the country. 

In the zone farther north there is an urgent need for 
the labor of slaves, A living is obtained there with 
more difficulty than in the equatorial zone, and the effort 
on the part of one to shift arduous labor to the shoulders 
of another results in the enslavement of the weak to do the 
work of the strong. In the arid zone a slave class is not 
considered indispensable, since it cannot easily maintain 

The Negro In Africa 5 

itself there and at the same time support superiors. As all 
of the population must work, free rather than slave labor 
is the rule. 

The people of Africa inhabiting these various zones are 
commonly known as the black race, but because of climatic 
differences men in these parts have become widely dif 
ferent from each other. The records of archeologists indi 
cate that the primitive African was not neces- African 
sarily black, but of an Asiatic type of Ne- peoples, 
groid features. 3 There are certain records which lead 
to the conclusion that at one time the peoples of Africa were 
largely of the mulatto type, and today the natives of 
Africa are not generally black but exhibit in their racial 
characteristics all of the divergencies found among the 
people of color in the United States. There are in the main 
such types as the small primitive stock, the larger forest 
Negro in the center and on the west coast, and the tall 
blacks in the Sudan. 

There seems to have been a movement of peoples and of 
civilizations from Asia into Egypt and from Egypt up the 
Nile into the interior of Africa, and again from Egypt west 
ward to the Atlantic near the Gulf of Guinea. The move . 
There was, too, a backward movement from merits of 
the West to the East causing a conflict, a 
fusion, and a destruction of cultures. Out of this chaos 
developed the Bantu, calling themselves the people, a war 
like nation which imposed its sway and language on all 
of Southern Africa extending from the Gulf of Guinea. 

In the north the controlling forces centered for some 

s For a discussion of African races see The Atlanta University 
Publications, No. 20; Select Discussions of Race Problem. More de 
tailed information may be obtained from G. Spiller s Papers on 
Inter-Racial Problems; The American Journal of Anatomy, Vol. 
IX, pp. 156-159; Science N. S., Vol. XXXI, pp. 171-186; Thomas s 
Source Book for Social Origins, pp. 156-169; The Journal of Race De 
velopment, Vol. I, No. 4, pp. 482-500; and Boas s The Mind of the 
Primitive Man, pp. 251-278. 

6 The Negro In Our History 

centuries in Egypt, which, although commonly regarded as 
a country of Asiatic civilization, was, like other parts of 
Egypt and Africa, molded in this crucible of cultures, 
the North. j^ was ^} ie j an( j O f m i xec i breeds or persons 

comparable to Negroes passing in this country as people 
of color. When these people were in ascendance, the great 
nations of the Mediterranean world, like the Greeks, the 
Italians, and Carthaginians, came into contact with them 
and were thereby influenced to the extent that investiga 
tors contend that the civilizations of southern Europe 
had African rather than European origin. 4 These civili 
zations, however, did not endure. 

It will no doubt be interesting, therefore, to trace briefly 
the rise and fall of some of these empires. 5 The highest 
of these civilizations centered in the Nile region, with 
Ethiopia around the head waters of that river and Egypt 
The rise of along the lower. The people of this country 
empires. were mixed breeds, as evidenced by their mon 

uments exhibiting Negro and mulatto faces. At least one- 
third of the Egyptians were distinctly black. History seems 
to indicate that the country was first settled by a Negro 
tribe that mingled later with the Mediterranean people 
coming from the North. Through this process a large 
number of Negroes went into Greece and even into Italy, 
where they influenced civilization not as slaves but as per 
sons rising to positions of usefulness. As such, Egypt* once 
led the world in culture. " Egypt," says Chamberlain, 
" acted as a channel by which the genius of Negroland 
was drafted off into the service of Mediterranean and 
Asiatic culture. 

Ethiopia and Egypt were at first united, but in the 
course of time separated as two distinct empires. There 

4 The Journal of Negro History, Vol. II, p. 331. 

5 The rise of those empires is treated in Felix DuBois s Timbuctoo 
the Mysterious, and in F. L. S. Lugard s Tropical Dependency. 

The Negro In Africa 7 

were various wars between the Egyptians and the Ethio 
pians when the former was trying to wrest the country from 
the invaders of the north. At no time, how- Ethiopia and 
ever, did the Negroes fail to figure conspicu- E &yp* 
ously in the civilization of Egypt, as is evidenced by the fact 


that full-blooded Negroes like Ha Nehesi and Nefertari sat 
on the Egyptian throne, and that many other of its rulers 
were of decidedly Negroid features. The affairs of the 
Ethiopian and Egyptian empires did not seem to become 

8 The Negro In Our History 

separate until during the middle empire of Egypt, when 
Nepata and Meroe became centers of a largely native 
civilization. The new empire, however, continued its wars 
against the Ethiopians and gradually incorporated the 
country, until Ethiopia finally became subject to that land. 
In the course of time, however, Ethiopia asserted itself, 
easily overran Egypt, and appointed a son of the king of 
Ethiopia to rule the land of the Pharaohs. 

The Negro was then at his best as a constituent factor 
in the affairs of the Egypto-Ethiopian empire. When, 
however, the country was conquered by the Assyrians and 
then by the Persians, Egypt became subject to the in- 
The Negro vaders from Asia, whereas Ethiopia continued 
in the empire. fts wav< Ethiopia was again invaded by a 
Greek influence from the East and the influences of the 
tribes from the Sudan on the West, but the Ethiopian 
language and government tended to endure. Ethiopians 
persistently gave trouble to the Romans, who undertook 
to subdue them and failed thoroughly to do so because 
of their interior position. This country lay asleep during 
the Middle Ages. In later years it became known as Nubia, 
and finally as Abyssinia, after having experienced various 
conquests and subjugations resulting in changes which 
have not yet succeeded in blotting out altogether its ancient 

With the exception of what the historian Herodotus has 
left in fragmentary form, not much is known about the 
early nations established on the Niger or the Sudan. They 
Sudan and are connected in history with Ethiopia and 
the Niger. Egypt as a center of culture distinctly Afri 
can, as evidenced by the figures of Sherbro and the mega 
liths of Gambia. The first actual history dates from the ap 
proach of the Mohammedans about the year 1000. The 
Mohammedans came largely as traders and gave much 
stimulus to the rise of commerce among these people, not 

The Negro In Africa 


utterly changing the civilization but decidedly influencing 
the life and history of the people. Drawing no color 
line, these Arabs blended readily with the Negroes and gave 
rise to the prominence of certain Arabised blacks repre 
sented by Antar, who in Arabia became the national hero 
and one of the great poets of Islam. Carrying their civiliza 
tion later into Spain, the Africans attained distinction there 
also, for a Negro poet resided at Seville and in 1757 a 
Negro founded a town in lower Morocco. 


In the eleventh century the Moslems found in the west 
the far advanced kingdom of Ghana, which they conquered 
after much resistance of the natives, who had an army of two 
hundred thousand men and sufficient wealth The Kingdom 
to support it. When this kingdom declined of G-hana. 
in the thirteenth century, Melle superseded it and added 
greatly to its wealth by the expansion of its commerce 
through welcoming the Mohammedan traders. They found 

10 The Negro In Our History 

evidence of advanced civilizations even in the Congo, and 
learned that the Zulu chiefs, whose armies swept south 
eastern Africa, exhibited unusual power of military 

Among the cities where this exceptional culture was dis 
covered was that of Jenne, from which the modern name 
Guinea has been obtained. This city experienced, as usual, 
The State migrations and movements frequent in other 
of Jenne. parts of Africa, destroying many of the evi 
dences of civilization. But according to Frobenius, the 
traveler observed an advanced culture in their terra-cotta 
industry, in their achievements in clay and stone and iron, 
in their glass beads, earthen and glassware, and in the dex 
terity of their weaving. This civilization shows the city 
group like that around Timbuctu and Hausa. These cities 
had a government largely like that of an autonomy of 
Timbuctu. modern times what we would call the social 
and industrial state, but of an essentially democratic 
order. These achievements so impressed the world 
that in keeping with other claims based on prejudice, 
white men have undertaken to accredit whites with this 

There developed also the states commonly known as the 
Ashanti and Dahomey, 6 which, because of their orgies of 
war and sacrifice of human beings exhibited a striking 
contrast to the city democracy of elevated religious ideas, 
Ashanti and organized industry, and noble art." So far 
Dahomey. ^ known, however, the white race has not yet 
made a strenuous effort to prove that this civilization was 
Caucasian, doubtless for the reason that these very back 
ward conditions rendered the country so weak that it 
finally developed into a region of internecine wars which 

a The cruelty practiced in Dahomey is evident from a speech of the 
king of that country, found in The Journal of Negro History, Vol. 
I, p. 65. 

The Negro In Africa 11 

paved the way for the lucrative slave trade carried on by 
the Christian nations. 

In the regions of the great lakes flourished other centers 
of civilization. There, evidences of culture and the mining 
of silver and gold and trade in precious stones appeared. 
These Africans were the first to smelt iron and to use it 
as the great leverage of civilization by which the world has 
been enabled to accomplish its wonders in modern times. 
They had useful iron implements, erected well-constructed 
buildings and fortifications, made beautiful pottery, and 
worked extensively in the precious metals. As indicated 
by their utensils and implements, they had made much 
more advancement in religion than some of the other tribes, 
inasmuch as they had temples of significance comparing 
favorably with those of the Greeks and Romans. The gov 
ernment established was based on slavery and the people 
devoted themselves to agriculture and other industries. 

There emerged, too, the large kingdom of Songhay, cov 
ering the period from the year 700 to 1335, with three well- 
connected dynasties distinguished by great warriors who 
extended the territory of the empire, and The Kingdom 
statesmen who distinguished themselves in of Songhay. 
administering its affairs. After resisting the Mohammedans 
for some time, the sixteenth king was converted to their 
faith about the year 1000. Among the greatest of these 
rulers was Soni Ali, noted for his military exploits and his 
success as a statesman. The country again saw something 
like a return to a golden age under another distinguished 
ruler called Mohammed Askia, who brought the country into 
contact with Egypt and the outer world, and finally 
marched against neighboring empires, which he conquered 
and ruled with a provincial system very much like that of 
Rome. He established schools of learning and promoted 
the study of law, literature, the natural sciences, and 

12 The Negro In Our History 

In the end, however, this empire fell into the hands of 
undesirable rulers, and according to the pious annalist, 
"All was changed in a moment. Danger took the place of 
serenity, destitution of abundance ; trouble, calamities, and 
violence succeeded to tranquillity. Everywhere the popu 
lations began to destroy each other. In all places and in 
every direction rapine became the law, war spared neither 
life, nor property, nor the position of the people. Dis 
order was general, and it spread everywhere till it reached 
at last the highest degree of intensity. " " Things continued 
thus," adds the historian, "until towards the moment in 
which the Songhay dynasty approached its end, and its 
empire ceased to exist. At this moment faith was ex 
changed for infidelity ; there was nothing forbidden by God 
which was not openly done. Men drank wine, they gave 
themselves up to vice. . . . Because of these abominations, 
the Almighty in his vengeance drew down upon the Songhay 
the victorious army of the Moors, whom he brought through 
terrible sufferings from a distant country. Then the roots 
of this people were separated from the trunk, and the 
chastisement they underwent was exemplary. 7 

It is clear that African culture prior to the exploitation 
of the new world was in many respects like the culture of 
Europe. The natives far removed from the equator had 
African reached the stage of easily earning a sub 

culture, sistence by using iron implements, a thing 

which European nations were late in learning. In art and 
architecture they had advanced far beyond the primitive 
stage, in literature their achievements attained the rank 
of the world s best classics in the Tarik e Soudan, and in 
religion and morals most of them kept abreast with the 
times. In government the Africans united the best in 
democracy and monarchy. Theirs was a slave society, but 

7 F. L. S. Lngard, A Tropical Dcpcndcnci/, pp. 28.3-284 : The Journal 
of Negro History, Vol. TT, p. 140. 

The Negro In Africa 13 

there was a healthy sentiment against the exploitation of 

men. With the thinking class birth did not differ from 

birth; "as the freeman was born so was the slave." "In 

the beginning," said a pious 

African, "our Lord created all; 

with Him there is neither slave 

nor freeman, but every one is 

free." "To love a king," the 

African thought, "is not bad, but 

a king who loves you is better." 

And it sounds a little socialistic 

to hear the proverbs, "If thou 

art poor do not make the rich man 

thv friend," "If thou goest to a GUSTAVUS VASA, a talented 

,. , L African 

foreign country, do not alight at 

a rich man s house," or "It is better to be poor and live 
long than rich and die young." 

The African mind exhibited during these years evidences 
of a philosophy not to be despised. The native philosopher 
found three friends in "courage, sense and insight." The 
African realized that "the lack of knowledge African 
is darker than night," that "an ignorant man proverbs, 
is a slave," and that "whoever works without knowledge 
works uselessly. " " Not to know, he believed, is bad ; not 
to wish to know is worse. Adhering to a high standard of 
morals, the African taught the youth that "there is no 
medicine for hate" and that "he who bears malice is a 
heathen; he who injures another brings injury to him 
self." To emphasize opportunity the moralist reminded 
his fellows that "the dawn does not come twice to wake 
a man." To teach politeness he asserted that "bowing 
to a dwarf will not prevent your standing erect again." 
In emphasizing the truth, he asserted that "lies, however 
numerous, will be caught by truth when it rises, and the 
voice of truth is easily known." The selfish man was 

14 The Negro In Our History 

warned that "if you love yourself, others will hate you; 
if you humble yourself, others will love you." Among the 
Africans there was a feeling that "a man with wisdom is 
better off than a stupid man with any amount of charm 
and superstition. Such sentient expressions as "A 
butterfly that brushes against thorns will tear his wings," 
and * He who cannot move an ant and yet tries to move an 
elephant shall find his folly," have the ring of the planta 
tion philosophy developed in the United States. The 
proverbs "When the fox dies, fowls do not mourn," and 
* He who goes with a wolf will learn to howl, 8 exhibit more 
than ordinary mental development. 

8 A larger number of these proverbs appear in The Journal of Negro 
History, Vol. I, pp. 42-48; but a detailed study in this field would 
require R. F. Burton s Wit and Wisdom from West Africa, S. W. 
Koells s African Native Literature, A. B. Ellis s The Yoruba Speaking 
Peoples of the Slave Coast of West Africa, and H. Chatelian s Folk 
Lore of Angola. 



THAT the Negro should be enslaved was in the halcyon 
days of the institution no exception to the rule. Slavery 
was once the normal condition of the majority of the 
inhabitants of the world. In many countries Ancient 
slaves outnumbered freemen three to one. slavery. 
Greece and Rome, the most civilized of the ancient nations 
in which the so-called democracy of that day had its best 
opportunity, were not exceptions to this rule. Primitive 
slavery, however, differed very much from the slavery of 
which our forefathers remind us. Among the ancients, 
slavery resulted from the effort to make a safe disposition 
of captives in war by using them as laborers at home while 
citizens and subjects in good physical condition went 
abroad to defend the honor of the nation. 

It happened that centuries ago, when African civilization 
was not unlike that of the emerging modern Europe, Africa 
was disturbed from without and within by migrations like 
the movement which overthrew the Roman The Fifteenth 
empire and destroyed its civilization. Being Century, 
too weak to resist invaders while dealing with enemies at 
home, Africa yielded to the attacks of restless nations. 
When the Bantu hordes had destroyed the peace of the 
African empires, there came the Mohammedans in quest 
of slaves to supply their harems and armies, and finally the 
slave traders from the United States, giving cause for local 


16 The Negro In Our History 

wars to secure a labor supply for the exploitation of the 
New World. 1 

During the seventh and eighth centuries, the Moham 
medan religion well established itself in Western Asia and 
began to take over Northern Africa. At first Africans 
Mohammedan already enslaved were bought from their 
slavery. masters and used in war, as was the custom 

throughout Europe and Asia. When, however, the exigen 
cies of those circumstances demanded a larger number of 
slaves than could thereby be supplied, they were seized 
by well planned methods involving the enslavement and 
depopulation of large districts of Africa. This led to the 
overthrow of African nations long since established as 
centers of culture and the rise of other States committed 
to the policy of profiting by the lucrative slave trade. 
This trade finally extended to the very interior of the 
continent and became the most cruel traffic in human flesh 
theretofore known to the world. It is only of late that it 
can be said that this Mohammedan slave trade has been 
decidedly checked or brought to an end. It remained as a 
disgrace to certain Eastern nations during the latter part 
of the nineteenth century and even into the twentieth. 
Slavery among the Mohammedans, however, was not al 
together a hopeless condition. If the slave professed faith 
in the tenets of Mohammed, he became a communicant in 
that connection, enjoying equality with the richest and the 
best, accepted on the principle of the brotherhood of man. 

Following upon the Mohammedan quest of slaves came 
the discovery of America, which, being in itself a conspicu- 

i The conditions in Africa facilitating the increase in the slave 
trade arc treated in T. K. Ingram s History of Slavery and Serfdom, 
John R. Spears s The American Slave Trade, W. E. B. DuBois s Sup 
pression of the African Slave Trade, B. Mayer s Captain Canot 
or Twenty Years of an African Slaver, R. Drake s The Revelations of 
a Slave Smuggler, Bryan Edward s West Indies, and T. Clarkson s 
History of the Abolition of the Slave Trade, 2 Volumes. 

The Negro Enslaved 


ous event in the Keiiaissance, meant nothing less than the 
opening of a new field of exploitation in a hitherto unknown 
world. In carrying out the policy of com- The slave 
mercial expansion so eagerly championed some trade, 
years later by the leading nations of Europe, the planter 
class did not proceed far before they fell back on compulsory 
labor. At first they impressed the Indians into their ser 
vice, but because of their intractability these proved in most 
cases to be unprofitable bondmen. 


Certain settlers established mainly in Pennsylvania, Mary 
land and Virginia made the experiment with indentured 
white servants. Some of these were, like the Pennsylvania 
Redemptioners, respectable persons bound to Indentured 
service for a number of years to pay their servants, 
expense from Europe to the New World. To Virginia and 
Maryland, however, were transported a large number of 
convicts more or less desirable than the ruined and im 
prisoned debtors whose release was effected by Oglethorpe 

18 The Negro In Our History 

that they might try life anew in Georgia. This traffic, like 
the slave trade, was objectionable to some colonies, and they 
enacted measures to restrict it ; but these were vetoed by the 
King of England as being contrary to acts of Parliament 
granting authority for the continuation of the evil. As 
white servants, however, could not be obtained in sufficiently 
large numbers to supply the demand for labor, and as the 
indefinite term of their service was prejudicial to the inter 
est of their masters, there followed, in the eighteenth cen 
tury, an increasing demand for Negro slaves in the agricul 
tural colonies. 

The Christians, like the Mohammedans, justified their 
enslavement of foreigners on the ground of their being cap 
tives in war, but in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, 
when the Europeans were engaged in the exploitation of 
Christian the New World, slaves were no longer merely 
slavery. taken over as a sequel of war but became also 

an object of commerce to supply the colonies with cheap 
labor. This change of attitude was justified by the Chris 
tian world on the ground that, although it was contrary to 
an unwritten law to enslave a Christian, this principle was 
not applicable to the unconverted Negroes. Driven later 
from this position when numerous Negroes accepted Chris 
tianity, they salved their consciences by a peculiar philoso 
phy of the officials of the church to the effect that conversion 
did not work manumission in the case of the Negro who dif 
fered so widely from the white man. The substance of this 
was soon incorporated into the laws of the colonies. 

Prior to the operation of the slave trade for the purpose 
of exploitation, there had been sufficient infiltration of the 
Negroes into southern European countries to make their 
African presence no exception to the rule. African 

slaves in slaves were brought to Spain, and this trade 

Europo. was f^her extended by the Portuguese when 

they conquered the Mohammedans of North Africa. After 

The Negro Enslaved 19 

the extensive explorations of Prince Henry, the Portuguese 
ships were bringing to that country more than seven or 
eight hundred slaves every year to serve as domestic 
servants and to work the estates evacuated by the Moors. 
Slaves were so common in the city of Seville in 1474 that 
Ferdinand and Isabella nominated a celebrated Negro, 
Juan de Valladolid, as the "mayoral of the Negroes" in 
that city. 2 

This slavery in the Iberian peninsula, of course, was of 
a mild form.; for, despite the suggestions of men commer 
cially inclined, the Christian Queen Isabella had refused 
to permit the traders to embark upon the slavery in 
enterprise as a commercial one. Furthermore, Spain, 
to prevent the spread of heathenism and to promote re 
ligion, she allowed only Christian Negroes to be carried 
to the colonies. 3 At the death of Isabella, however, King 
Ferdinand, who was less interested in the Negroes than 
was his companion, gradually yielded to the requests of the 
merchant class, and unconverted Negroes were brought to 
the Spanish colonies. But Ferdinand did not give exten 
sive privileges to all persons desiring to import Negroes, 
and at times undertook to check the trade. In the reign of 
Charles V, Bishop las Cassas urged a plan for importing 
Negroes to take the place of the enfeebled Indian slaves, 
and this plan, once adopted, became the policy of the Span 
iards in dealing with the Negroes in their colonies. 

All of the seafaring nations of Europe took part in 
this enterprise. The Portuguese, the first to make extensive 
explorations on the coasts of Africa under the direction of 
Prince Henry of that country, built the first Traders on 
slave fort at Elmina, on the Gold Coast, in the African 
1482. The Dutch, too, at the time of their Coast 
struggle for freedom from Spanish domination in 1599, 

2 W. E. B. DuBois, The Negro, p. 146. 

3 C. G. Woodson, The Education of the Negro Prior to 1861, p. 19. 


The Negro In Our History 

attacked the forts of the Portuguese, then subject to Spain, 
and engaged in the slave trade themselves. The English, 
desirous of reaping some of these benefits for their own 
commerce, undertook in 1562 to secure this trade through 
Sir John Hawkins. Uniting religion with the slave trade, 
he ordered his crews to " serve God daily," and "to love 
one another." 4 He went first to Hispaniola with three 


hundred Negroes whom he traded for pearls, hides and 
other products. The second voyage was more hazardous, 
and he failed in the third. In spite of his murderous plun 
dering, however, his chronicler entreats that "his name 
be praised f orevermore, Amen. 5 

Yet men of the type of Hawkins are not to be unsym- 
pathetically condemned. In that day there was no sharp 

*Hakluyt s Voyages, Vol. Ill, p. 521. 

s E. Charming, History of the United States, Vol. I, p. 115. 

The Negro Enslaved 21 

distinction between a pirate and an honorable seaman. 
Some of the sea rovers held commissions of their God-fearing 
sovereigns who promoted these enterprises. piracy and 
The white race, moreover, has not yet emerged commerce, 
from the stage of primitive civilization when right was 
restricted to one s blood kin. If strangers within the gates 
could not be murdered, there was no moral law restraining 
one from abusing the subjects of non-Christian nations. 
Mendez believed that his slaughter of captives was for the 
glory of God, and Francis Drake, the notorious plunderer 
of his time, commended his lieutenant "to the tuition of 
Him that with his blood redeemed us. " 6 In this state of 
moral backwardness, therefore, it did not startle Christen 
dom when there appeared in Virginia in 1619 "a Dutch 
manne-of-war that sold us twenty negars, thus introducing 
in the United States the curse of slavery from which this 
country has not yet been thoroughly redeemed. 

The slave trade was mainly promoted through a few 
large trading corporations. Among the first of these were 
the Dutch West India Company, established in 1621, and 
the Eoyal African Company, chartered by the Slave-trade 
English in 1672. These corporations main- corporations, 
tained a line of vessels plying between Europe and certain 
slave-trading ports established on the Guinea coast. 7 The 
French operated in the region of the Senegal, the English 
on the Gambia, and the Dutch and English on the Gold 
Coast. In the course of time the slave trade in the interior 
of Africa was highly developed. Wars were being waged 
for the sole purpose of securing slaves for the market, and 
when captured they were brought to the coast and sold to the 
representatives of the companies with vessels in port for 
their exportation. They were not natives of the countries 

GE. Charming, History of the U. 8., I, p. 116. 

7 For a sketch of the early slave trade see George F. Zook s The 
Royal Adventurers Trading Into Africa. 

22 The Negro In Our History 

along the coast. In fact, Africans of these ports were 
seldom sold for this purpose except when a rival nation 
captured the slaves of the masters living in a hostile section. 
Most of the slaves supplying this demand were brought from 
the distant countries in the interior of Africa. 

The commodities given in exchange for these slaves were 
sent out from manufacturing centers like Newport in Rhode 
Island and Liverpool in England. These vessels carried 
iron bars, rum, cloth, shells, crystal beads, brass pans, and 
The Slavers, foreign coins, to be exchanged for slaves. 
The slaves thus purchased had been driven to the coast in 
coffles, sometimes for distances of more than one thousand 
miles, crossing a country which had practically no facilities 
for transportation with the exception of those with which 
nature had endowed it. As it was necessary to go most of 
the way walking, and as the means of subsistence were not 
always to be secured, many of the slaves dropped dead 
from thirst and famine. Those who succeeded in surviving 
Horrors of the the ordeal of this drive to the coast were 
Slave Trade, presented for sale on arrival. Captives ac 
cepted as valuable were shackled and herded together like 
cattle in ships, which made their way to the West Indies. 
The space usually allowed for the standing room of a 
slave was just a few square inches. Crowded thus to 
gether in the lower parts of an unsanitary vessel, thou 
sands of these unfortunates died of various diseases be 
fore reaching America. Occasionally there would arise, 
among the captives on board, a riot to liberate them 
selves by killing their owners, but the system was finally 
reduced to such a safe procedure that little fear therefrom 
was experienced. 8 

These slaves were not brought directly to the continental 
ports. Slave labor did not at first seem very profitable 

s This trade has been described by John R. Spears in his The Ameri 
can Slave Trade. 

The Negro Enslaved 


along the Atlantic, but in the West Indies, devoted to the 
production of cane sugar then so much in demand, African 
slaves were welcomed. They were carried to these islands, 
where they were exchanged mainly for such raw materials 
as molasses which, when brought by the slav- Slaves carr i e d 
ers to our ports, was manufactured into rum. to the 
With this rum the ships set out to Africa Wes 
again on their triangular route connecting with the commer 
cial centers in three widely separated parts of the world. 

In the West Indies the Ne- ,__ 

groes were successfully ex 
ploited so as to make those 
islands the wealthiest colo 
nies of the world. In the 
course of time, however, 
after having been well 
broken in and in some cases 
after having taken over a 
considerable portion of the 
western civilization, many 
slaves were brought from 
the West Indies to the 
United States. Some of 
them had then learned to 
read and write two or three 
modern languages. 9 When, 
however, such Negroes proved to be the source of discon 
tent and insurrections because of the mental development 
they had experienced, the American colonists deemed it wiser 
to import slaves in their crude form directly from Africa. 
As to exactly how many Negroes were thus brought away 
from Africa, authorities widely differ. When the slave 

9 For the mental development of these slaves see C. G. Woodson s 
The Education of the Negro Prior to 1861, pp. 82-84; and The Journal 
of Negro History, Vol. I, pp. 177-189, 


24 The Negro In Our History 

trade was in full swing 50,000 or 100,000 were brought 
over every year. Some authorities believe that not 
The enormity more than 5,000,000, while others contend 
of the trade. that 10,000,000 Africans were expatriated. 
But to figure out the extent to which this process of de 
population affected Africa, one must bear in mind that for 
every slave imported into America at least four or five 
others had to meet death in the numerous wars waged 
solely for supplying the slave market, in the inhuman drive 
to the coast, and in the cruel shipment in unsanitary ships 
hardly suitable for importing hogs. Africa probably lost 
more than 50,000,000 natives. When we think of how 
the recent conscription of 4,000,000 men upset the economic 
and social life in our own country, we can easily estimate 
the effect of the loss to Africa of 50,000,000 of its in 

The source of these Negroes will be of much interest. 
They came in the main from Guinea and the Gold Coast. 
Among these were a few of the most intelligent of the 
Sources of Africans, the Senegalese, with an infusion of 
the slaves. Arabic blood, especially valuable for their 
work as mechanics and artisans. Then there were the 
Mandingoes, who were considered gentle in demeanor but 
prone to theft. The Coromantees brought from the Gold 
Coast were hearty and stalwart in mind and body, and 
for that reason frequently the source of slave insurrections 
which became the eternal dread of the masters. It was 
said, however, that the Coromantees were not revengeful 
when well treated. Slavers brought over some Whydahs, 
Nagoes and Pawpaws, as they were much desired by the 
planters because they were lusty, industrious, cheerful and 
submissive. There came also the Gaboons, who were physi 
cally weak and consequently unsuited for purposes of 
exploitation. The colonists imported, too, some Gambia 
Negroes, prized for their meekness, whereas the Eboes 

The Negro Enslaved 2.5 

from Calabar were not desired, because they were inclined 
to commit suicide rather than bear the yoke of slavery. 
The Congoes, Angolas and the Eboes gave their masters 
much trouble by running away. 

The lot of the slave in the West Indies was most unfor 
tunate. Owing to the absentee ownership, the inefficient 
management of the plantations, and the paucity of white 
women to serve as restraining influences on masters, the 
system of slavery developed there proved to Theslave 
be of a cruel sort. The slaves were treated in the 
more as brutes subjected to a process known * West Indies - 
as li breaking in." Some were assigned to work among 
well seasoned slaves, and a few were given individual tasks. 
When they became w r ell "broken in," they were grouped 
by families in separate quarters, surrounded by small tracts 
of land on which they were required to raise their own food. 
Such things as clothing, dried fish, molasses, rum and salt, 
which they could not easily produce, were issued from the 
plantation commissary. They went to work in gangs, some 
tilling the sugar cane in the fields, some to work in the mills 
and stills, some at handicrafts, and others in domestic 
service. 10 

As few implements had been introduced and the planters 
of that day did not easily take to labor-saving devices, most 
of the cultivation of the crops was done with the hoe, which 
required the hardest labor. Under these condi- Hardships 
tions the slaves could not develop into a robust the cause 
class and, worst of all, many of them died as 
a result of this drudgery. While the death-rate was un 
usually high, the birth-rate was exceptionally small, as 
there was no provision for taking care of the African new 
born. Speaking of Jamaica, a surgeon said that one-third 
of the babies died in the first month, and few of the imported 

10 This purely economic aspect of slavery has been unscientifically 
discussed by U. B. Phillips in his American Negro Slavery. 


The Negro In Our Histoiy 

women bore children. A contemporary said that more than 
a quarter of the babies died within the first nine days of 
"jaw fall," and another fourth before they passed their 
second year. This meant that the colonies had to depend 
on the importation of new African slaves, thus giving 
stimulus to the slave trade to supply the demand for labor. 


Among the Spanish and French colonists the condition 
of the blacks was somewhat different. The home coun 
tries in these two cases insisted on the enlightenment of the 
The enlight- slaves and were more generous than the Eng- 
enment of lish in offering bondmen opportunities to toil 
the slaves.^ upwar d. While the slaves as such did not 
fare much better than they did on the English plantation, 
the tendency of the Latins to interbreed with the blacks, 
and their custom of recognizing and elevating their mulatto 
offspring, offered a way of escape to a large number of 

The Negro Enslaved 27 

Negroes among the French and Spaniards, who cohabited 
with Negro women rather than bring wives from their home 
countries. A large number of bondmen in Latin- America 
secured their manumission by meritorious service and 
thereafter had the status of freemen. 11 

An individual of this class closely connected with our 
local history was Estevanecito, or little Stephen. He arose 
to usefulness and prominence among the Spaniards while 
they were extending their explorations into Estevanecito 
Mexico and into what is now the southwestern the Negro 
part of the United States. Estevanecito was explorer - 
the moving spirit of the expedition conducted there by Fray 
Marcos de Niza. He was usually the forerunner of the 
forces preparing the way for those who were to claim the 
country, going far enough in advance of the expedition to 
clear their path of hostile Indians. His work was well 
planned and successfully executed during the most of his 
tours, but he met a stubborn resistance at Cibola, where he 
fell mortally wounded in trying to carry the town by 
storm. 12 

11 This interbreeding is set forth in detail by C. G. Woodson in 
The Journal of Negro History, Vol. Ill, p. 335. 

12 "Leaving the northernmost Spanish settlement of the western 
coast," says a legend, "Fray Marcos took with him Estevan, the black 
companion of Cabeza de Vaca, who had been in search of the El 
Dorado and Seven Cities of so much concern to the Spaniards. A 
few weeks after setting out Fray Marcos sent Estevan in command 
of a number of Indians fifty or sixty leagues ahead to discover the 
El Dorado. The arrangement was that if Estevan found anything 
worth while he would send back a large cross. If the information 
obtained did not seem valuable, he would send a small cross. Fray 
Marcos was much delighted four days later when there returned an 
Indian bearing a large cross and describing the seven large cities of 
imposing lime and stone structures with portals ornamented with 
turquoise. Too eager to await the coming of Fray Marcos, Estevan 
undertook to take the city, where he was overpowered by superior 
forces and slain. Presenting himself as the agent of the white man, 
he was branded a liar by the Indians, who thought it incredible 
for a black man to be the agent of two whites. They found Estevan 
greedy, immoral and cowardly, and when he sought to escape, killed 
him." See Channing, History of the United States, Vol. I, pp. 75-76. 

28 The Negro In Our History 

Among these fortunate Negroes there was in Guatemala, 
in the seventeenth century, a freedman who had accumu 
lated much wealth. He had secured his liberty by paying 
his kind master a handsome sum for his freedom. There- 
A thrifty after he bought a large farm and considerably 

freedman in increased his holdings by making other pur 
chases. He lived in Agua Caliente, a little 
Indian village on the road to the city of Guatemala, in that 
part of the country then said to abound with gold, a treasure 
which the Spaniards had for many years sought in vain. 
Although the sources of this Negro s wealth were cattle, 
sheep, goats, and his trade in butter and cheese with the 
City of Guatemala, the Spaniards persisted in believing 
that his wealth came from the hidden treasure. 13 

In his travels through this tropical region, Sir Thomas 
Gage found a still more interesting Negro of this class. 
While sailing along the Atlantic coast of Costa Rica, Gage s 
The Black ship was captured by two corsairs under the 
Corsair. fl a g O f ^he Dutch, who were then struggling 

against Spain for their freedom. The commander of this 
ship was a mulatto named Diaguillo, a native of Havana, 
where his mother then lived. Because of maltreatment by 
the Governor of Campeche, to whom he was attached as a 
servant, this mulatto desperately ventured to swim to one 
of the Dutch ships near-by. Offering himself to serve the 
Dutch against those who had abused him, he easily in 
gratiated himself into their favor. Soon thereafter he mar 
ried a Dutch girl and arose to the position of captain of a 
vessel under the command of the famous and dreadful 
commander named Pie de Palo. Coming aboard the ship 
on which Gage was sailing, the corsair took four thousand 
pesos worth of jewelry and pearls and deprived the indi 
viduals of their personal belongings. But because of Gage s 

i*The Journal of Negro History, Vol. I, p. 395; and Sir Thomas 
Gage s Voyages, Part 3, Ch. II. 

The Negro Enslaved 29 

ministerial profession Diaguillo permitted him to retain 
some books, pictures and clothes, saying to him, * * If fortune 
to-day is on my side, to-morrow it will be on yours, and 
what I have won to-day, that I may lose to-morrow." 
Diaguillo then prepared a luxurious dinner, to which he 
invited Thomas Gage. Thereafter he took leave of the 
captives, thanking the crew for the good luck they had 
procured him. 14 

The most interesting example of the enlightened Negro 
of this class in the West Indies was Francis Williams, the 
son of one John Williams, liberated in 1708, and ranked 
among those persons in the island against Francis 
whom slave testimony was forbidden. These Williams, 
same privileges then extended to other mem 
bers of his family, and attached to them unusual impor 
tance among the white people with whom they moved so 
cially. We have much more information about his son 
Francis. The family was of such good report, and the youth 
Francis had exhibited so many evidences of mental capacity, 
that early in the eighteenth century the Duke of Montague, 
desiring to put to test some of his opinions about the capa 
bilities of the Negro, had Francis instructed in an elemen 
tary school in Jamaica and then sent to an English grammar 
school to prepare for Cambridge University. After some 
years Francis Williams completed his education at that in 
stitution and returned to Jamaica between 1738 and 1748. 

Impressed more than ever with the truth that a Negro 
trained in the same way as a white man will exhibit the 
same intellectual attainments, the Duke of Montague sought 
further to advance his protege by securing for him a seat 
in the Jamaica Council. This proposition, The D uke of 
however, was opposed by Governor Trelawny, Montague, 
who contended that admitting a black man to the Council 

" The Journ-al of Negro History, Vol. I, p. 395; and Sir Thomas 
Gage s Voyages, Part 3, Ch. II. 

30 The Negro In Our History 

would excite restlessness among the slaves. Whether or not 
the governor was diplomatic or prejudiced is not known. 
He did add a Negro detachment to the army employed in 
Jamaica but he never permitted the ambitious youth to sit 
in the Council. Williams settled in Spanish Town, the capi 
tal of the island, and during the rest of his life conducted 
a classical school. In this position he made a reputation 
for himself as a schoolmaster and figured somewhat promi 
nently as a poet. The only evidence of his attainments in 
this field, however, consists of a Latin poem which conforms 
in most respects to the standard of that age. It seemed, 
however, that the poet was not very popular among his own 
people, as he was regarded as haughty and opinionated, 
treating his fellow blacks with contempt and entertaining a 
rather high opinion of his own knowledge. He was also 
charged with being a sycophant and racial toady who said 
and did much to do his race harm. 15 

This better situation of a few Negroes was due also to the 
fact that a large number of slaves in remote parts of the 
West Indies and Latin-America asserted themselves and 
The Maroons, escaped to uninhabited districts to declare and 
maintain their independence rather than bear the yoke 
of bondage. In parts where the Negroes were as numerous 
as the whites, these fugitives often jeopardized the very life 
of the colony. As such, they were known as Maroons. They 
had few arms that the primitive man did not possess, but 
because of their resourcefulness and power in military 
organization they became a source of much terror through 
out Latin-America. 16 In the small colony of Guatemala in 
the seventeenth century there were as many as three hun- 

15 The career of Francis Williams is treated in The Journal of 
Negro History, Vol. II, pp. 146-159. A better account may be found 
in William James Gardner s History of Jamaica, p. 31; and in 
Edward Long s History of Jamaica, p. 234. 

10 Dallas, History of Maroons, p. 26. 

The Negro Enslaved 31 

dred such Negroes who had resorted to the woods and 
could not be subdued by the forces sent against them. 

The greatest enterprise of the Maroons, however, was 
exhibited not by any particular individual but rather by 
that of the little Negro Republic in Brazil, called Palmares, 
styled by Professor Charles E. Chapman as The Negro 
the Negro Numantia, because its career resem- Numantia. 
bles so much that of Numantia against which the Romans 
fought for a number of years before they could invade the 
beleaguered city. Because of the bad treatment of the 
Portuguese slaves, many of those imported from Guinea 
escaped to the forests, where they established villages called 
quilombos, the type to which Palmares, in the Province of 
Pernambuco, belonged. It was not long, however, before 
this town extended its sway over a number of others set 
tled by persons of the same antecedents. At one time it 
was reported to have a population of twenty thousand, with 
ten thousand fighting men. Palmares, the name also of the 
capital of the republic, was surrounded by wooden walls 
made of the trunks of trees and entered by huge gates 
provided with facilities for wide surveillance and sentry 

In the course of time the population of this village 
gradually increased because of the eagerness of slaves and 
freemen to try their fortunes in the forests. In the begin 
ning they maintained themselves by a sort The rise of 
of banditry, taking food, slaves and women, the republic, 
whether mulatto, black, or white. They later settled down 
to agriculture, and established seemingly peaceful trade 
relations with the Portuguese settlements in the less hostile 
parts of Brazil. Palmares then developed into a sort of 
nation, uniting the desirable features of the republican 
and monarchial form of government, presided over by a 
chief executive called the Zomle, who ruled with absolute 

32 The Negro In Our History 

authority during life. "The right to candidacy," says Pro 
fessor Chapman, "was restricted to a group recognized 
as composing the bravest men of the community. Any man 
in the state might aspire to this dignity providing he had 
Negro blood in his veins. There were other officers, both 
of a military and a civil character. In the interest of good 
order the Zombes made laws imposing the death penalty 
for murder, adultery and robbery. Influenced by their 
antecedents, slavery was not discontinued, but a premium 
was placed on freedom in that every Negro who won his 
freedom by a successful flight to Palmares remained free, 
whereas those who were captured as slaves continued as 
such in Palmares. 

This Negro Republic, however, was in the eyes of the 
Portuguese an unnatural growth. It was considered a 
resort for undesirable aliens who constituted an ever-in 
creasing danger to the prosperity of Brazil. In 1698, there- 
fore, Governor Caetano de Mello of Pernam- 

destniction buco ordered an expedition to proceed against 
ares * the city. These brave blacks met the invading 
forces and indisputably defeated them. Returning later, 
however, with a formidable army of seven thousand men 
under the command of a more competent soldier and pro 
vided, too, with adequate artillery, the Portuguese reached 
the city after some difficulty and placed it in a state of siege. 
The defense of this city was heroic. "After the Portuguese 
had breached the walls in three places," says the annalist, 
"their infantry attacked in force. They entered the city, 
but had to take it foot by foot. At last the defenders came 
to the center of Palmares where a high cliff impeded further 
retreat. Death or surrender were the only alternatives. 
Seeing that his cause was lost beyond repair, the Zombe 
hurled himself over the cliff, and his action was followed 
by the most distinguished of his fighting men. Some per 
sons were indeed taken, but it is perhaps a tribute to 

The Negro Enslaved 33 

Palmares, though a grewsome one, that they were all put 
to death; it was not safe to enslave these men, despite the 
value of their labor. Thus passed Palmares, the Negro 
Numantia, most famous and greatest of the Brazilian 
quilombos." 17 

17 The Journal of Negro History, Vol. Ill, pp. 31-32. 



THE system of exploiting Africans in the West Indies 
did not reach the slave States until the cotton gin and other 
mechanical appliances instrumental in effecting the indus- 
Economic trial revolution made slavery seemingly .profit- 
slavery in the able in the United States through the cotton 
plantation system resulting therefrom. 1 The 
first slaves brought to the American colonies were few, and 
they served largely as house servants, so closely attached to 
the homes of their masters that they were treated like mem 
bers of the families. No restriction on the mental develop 
ment of the slaves was therefore devised, as it was deemed 
necessary to effect in them whatever speedy improvement 
was possible, with a view to increasing their efficiency. 

In the course of time the number of slaves decidedly in 
creased in certain colonies devoted to agriculture. There 
were about 6,000 slaves in Virginia in 1700, and they so 
rapidly multiplied as factors in the widely extending 
tobacco culture that in 1760 one-half of the inhabitants of 
that colony were slaves. To supply the need for cheap 
labor in the production of rice and indigo, the blacks in- 

i Slavery in its first form is briefly treated in Channinp s History 
of the United States, II, 336-400, and in A. B. Hart s Slavery and 
Abolition, Ch. IV. The slaves opportunities for enlightenment are 
presented in C. G. Woodson s The Education of the Negro Prior to 
1861, 18-150. See also Bryan Edwards History of the West Indies: 
Sir Harry Johnston s The Negro in the New World; and the Journal 
of Negro History, I, 132-150, 163-216, 243-264, 399-435: II, 78-82, 
105-125, 186-191; 229-251, 411-422, 429-430; III, 1-21, 22-28, 33-44, 
45-54, 55-89, 211-328, 335-353, 381-434. 


Slavery In Its Mild Form 


creased so fast in South Carolina after 1730 that slaves 
soon exceeded the whites and outnumbered them two to one 
in 1760. This increase tended to degrade the position of 
the white servant, to "cause pride and ruin the industry 
of our white people, who, seeing the race of poor creatures 
below them, looked down upon them as if they were slaves." 
In 1756 Andrew Burnaby reported that the people of Vir 
ginia hardly regarded the Indians and Negroes as human 
beings, and that it was almost impossible to convict a white 
man for killing a Negro or an Indian. 2 

There were not many slaves in the northern part of the 

United States. Pennsyl 
vania had a considerable 
number, however, for Wil 
liam Penn himself owned 
slaves. A few toiled on 
the farms along the Hud 
son, and the number in the 
city of New Few slaves in 
York reached the North. 
6,000 when the whole popu 
lation was 40,000. Boston 
was one of the centers in 
New England to which 
some Negroes were brought, 
but a still larger number 
doubtless landed at the 
ports connecting more closely with the West Indies. Many 
of these went to Newport and thence they gradually scat 
tered to other points. In 1748 South Kingston had 1,405 
whites, 381 Negroes and 193 Indians. New England, how 
ever, because of its economic condition, never became the 
home of many slaves ; for in 1770, when there were 697,624 
slaves in the thirteen States, only 3,763 of these were in 


2 Andrew Burnaby, Travels Through North America, p. 31. 

36 The Negro- In Our History 

New England. At that time 36,323 of the slave population 
lived in the Middle States and 656,538 in the South. 

The Negroes, however, did not yield to this system with 
out resistance. In New York, in 1712, an insurrection of 
slaves grew to such an extent that, had it not been for 
timely aid from the garrison, the city would have been 
Early Negro burned. Whites were attacked in their homes 
insurrections. an( j on ^he streets by the blacks in Charleston, 
South Carolina, in 1720. In 1730 many slaves in this 
colony actually armed and embodied to destroy the whites. 
Two hundred Negroes assembled near the mouth of the 
Rappahannock River, Virginia, to kill the white people 
in a church, but when the plot was discovered they fled. 
In 1723 some desperate Negroes planned to burn the city of 
Boston, and so much fear was expected that the city had to 
take extra precaution against "Indians, Negro or Mulatto 
Servants, or Slaves." A number of Negroes arose against 
their masters in Savannah, Georgia, in 1788, but fled when 
twice fired upon, as they were already disconcerted by a 
disagreement as to time. 

In Williamsburg, Virginia, there occurred an insurrection 
of the blacks in 1730, occasioned by the rumor that Governor 
Spottswood had arrived with instructions to free all persons 
who had been baptized. Five counties sent forth armed 
Eighteenth men w ^ orc ^ ers to kill the slaves if they 
Century refused to submit. That year a Negro in 

uprisings. Maiden, Massachusetts, plundered and burned 
his master s home because he was sold to a man in Salem, 
whom he disliked. In 1731 slaves being imported from 
Guinea by George Scott of Rhode Island asserted themselves 
and murdered three of the crew. Captain John Major of 
Portsmouth, New Hampshire, in charge of a cargo of 
slaves, was murdered with all of his crew the following 
year by slaves carried on this same route. Captain Beers 
of Rhode Island, and all his unfortunate coworkers except 

Slavery In Its Mild Form 


two, suffered the same fate when on a similar voyage a few 
years later. 3 

In 1741 there broke out a formidable insurrection of 
slaves in New York City. To repress this uprising thir 
teen slaves were burned alive, eighteen were hanged, and 
eighty transported. Two of those exiled were sent to the 
West Indies, and it became a custom thereafter The New York 
for persons having "any Negro men, strong Plot of 1741 - 
and hearty, though not of the best moral character," to 

s eft enfui de chezles Souffignes, la nuit du 12 

courint, Un M$re Bfelae nooime POMPE , d tfrsviron cinj pieds cimj pmsct* 
r ?0bfte. j ii a rte achete dcr nit* rente nt de M. Perm, negotiant dt cctie tille; 
far liit <ja<tn| $1 a dccampe on gikt tt des culottes brumes : Celui qui le ramencr* 

1T PIASTRES de Recoropcnfe, ct tes frais rajfonnables qu i! aura fijts. Qui- 
k retires ctee tut fcrapourfuivii iuivant ia derniere rigucur de la Loi, par 


T* UN-AWAY from the Subfcribers, 

in the Night of the lath Iiift. a Sailor Negro Slave name* 
POMPEY", about 5 Fecf 5 inches high, and is Rotmft j fee was lately 
w "M>;ht ot" Mr. Perrj*, Merchant in this Town j had on when he w yt 
ay a brown Jacket and Breeches, Whoever brings him to the Sab* 
ftriber* fh*ll have IGHT DOLL A R S Reward, and rcafoaable 
Citsrfi paid. Any Perfon harbouring him will be pro/edited accor-* 
din^ to the utmoft Rigour of the La- f by 



brand them as subjects of transportation to the West Indies. 
In 1754 C. Croft of Charleston, South Carolina, had two 
of his female Negroes burned alive because they set fire 
to his buildings. In 1755 Mark and Phillis, slaves of John 
Codman of Charleston, having learned that their master 
had by his will made them free, poisoned him that they 
might expedite the matter. Mark was hanged and Phillis 
was burned alive. 4 

3 What the first slaves did to get rid of their masters is sketched 
in Joshua Coffin s Slave Insurrections. 

* /bid., p. 8. 

38 The Negro In Our History 

In spite of these uprisings, however, the slave population 
continued to increase, and this result was not strange; 
for in 1770 there were in England itself not less than 15,000 
Slavery in slaves brought in by traders as attendants and 
England. servants. There was no decided check to this 

influx until the famous Somerset decision. Somerset had 
run away from his master in Virginia. When captured he 
was to be shipped to Jamaica, where he was to be sold. A 
writ was procured by Gran- 
ville Sharp, however, and 
there followed a hearing 
which finally brought the 
question before Lord Mans 
field, who gave the opinion 

The Somerset that the state 
decision. of a slave is 

so odious that it can be 
supported only by positive 
law to that effect, which 
did not exist in England. 5 
He therefore ordered the 
slave to be discharged. Lib 
eral as this decision was, 
however, it did not seem GBANVILLE SHARP 

to have any effect on the colonies, although the struggle 
for the rights of man in this country tended to do much 
to direct attention to the condition of the Negro. 

There were then in the American colonies many slaves 
whose condition constituted an exception to the rule, 
and the slaves as a whole were much better treated at 
that time than they were during the nineteenth century. 
Exceptional Most of them were given some opportunity 
slaves. for enlightenment and religious instruction. 

Embracing these opportunities, many of them early estab- 

6 Hurd, Freedom and Bondage, I, 189-191. 

Slavery In Its Mild Form 39 

lished themselves as freemen, constituting an essential factor 
in the economic life of their communities. Some became 
artisans of peculiar skill, others obtained the position of 
contractors, and not a few became planters themselves, 
owning extensive estates and numbers of slaves. Sir 
Thomas Gage found a number of such planters of color in 
Guatemala in the seventeenth century; the mixed breeds 
of Louisiana afforded a number of this type, and the Eng 
lish colonies along the coast were no exception to this rule. 
John Cassor, probably one of the Negroes brought over by 
the Dutch in 1619, became an owner of slaves in Virginia. 
Andrew Bryan, a Negro Baptist preacher, was widely 
known as a slaveholder in Savannah, Georgia, before 1790. 
This attitude resulted largely from the number of white 
men who became interested in the welfare of the Negroes 
during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Among 
these were Paul le June, a Jesuit missionary The clergy and 
in Canada, Le Petit and Francois Phillibert the Macks. 
Watrum of the same sect in Louisiana, Alphonso Sandoval 
in Havana, Morgan Goodwyn in Virginia, Thomas Bacon in 
Maryland, and George Keith in Pennsylvania. Some of 
these liberal workers cooperated with the Society for the 
Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, to which the 
Negroes were indebted for most of their early enlighten 
ment. These reformers contended that the gospel was sent 
also to the slaves, who should be prepared by mental develop 
ment to receive it. With the increasing interest in educa 
tion, it became more restricted to the clergy and such other 
well chosen persons recommended by them and attached 
to the churches. The impetus given the propagation of the 
gospel among the crude colonists settling in America re 
sulted also in the proselyting of the Negroes who were 
then being brought from the jungles of Africa in increasing 
numbers. It was soon evident, however, that little could be 
effected in the enlightenment of these blacks without first 

40 The Negro In Our History 

teaching them the English language. In almost every case, 
therefore, during the eighteenth century, when the clergy 
undertook the teaching of the gospel among the blacks, it 
involved also extensive instruction in the fundamentals of 
education, that their message might have the desired effect. 9 

There was, therefore, in America during the eighteenth 
century, a sort of slavery differing materially from that of 
the nineteenth. 7 In fact, the Negroes were about as well 
Eighteenth provided with schools as the whites in some 
Century of the colonies. The first school for the educa 

tion of the whites in the Carolinas was estab 
lished in 1716, and a school for the education of the Negroes 
was established about one generation later. There were 
in a few colonies, schools not only for free Negroes but for 
slaves, who were sometimes taught in the classes with the 
children of their masters. In some cases, when the Negroes 
experienced sufficient mental development to qualify as 
teachers themselves, they were called upon to serve their 
masters children in this capacity. There were schools for 
Negroes in almost all of the cities and towns where they 
were found. 8 

It was fortunate for the Negroes that many schools of 
the middle colonies were conducted by the indentured ser 
vant class of low estate. It looks rather strange that our 
Convicts as fathers should commit to the care of the con- 
teachers, victs, who had been taken from the prisons in 
England and indentured in America, the task of educating 
their children. Yet this was the case. Jonathan Boucher 
said, in 1773, that two-thirds of the teachers in the colony of 
Maryland were such felons. 9 As these were despised by 

o The Journal of Negro History, I, 87, 233, 361, and 492, and 
II, 51. 

7 Woodson, Education of the Negro Prior to 1861, Chapter II. 

s Ibid., 10 to 150. 

9 Jonathan Boucher, A View of Causes and Consequences of the 
American Revolution, 39. 

Slavery In Its Mild Form 41 

the whites of the higher classes, they were forced to asso 
ciate with the Negroes, who learned from them how to read 
and write and were thereby prepared to enlighten their 
own fellow-men. 

The location of some of these schools established for 
Negroes will be of much interest. Samuel Thomas undertook 
the instruction of certain Negroes in the Goose Creek Parish 
in Charleston, South Carolina, in 1695. A Early schools 
school for the more extensive instruction of for Negroes, 
the Negroes was established there in 1744, with Harry and 
Andrew, the first of the Negro race to be employed as 
teachers in America. Further interest was shown in the 
enlightenment of the slaves in that section by gentlemen 
and ladies of consequence, and especially by Eliza Lucas, 
later the wife of the renowned Justice Pinckney. The Rev. 
Mr. Davies devoted much of his time to this work among 
the Negroes in Virginia, as did Hugh Neill and William 
Sturgeon, ministers in Pennsylvania. Elias Neau had a 
school for Negroes in New York as early as 1706, and 
Anthony Benezet began to hold evening classes for them 
in Philadelphia in 1750. The settlers of New England 
then tolerated the instruction of the slaves along with their 
own children. 

The evidences of the mental development of the Negroes 
of that day are found in the words of the masters them 
selves. In offering slaves for sale and advertising for 
fugitives, masters spoke of their virtues as well intellectual 
as their shortcomings. Judging from what development, 
they said about them in these advertisements, one 
must conclude that many of the eighteenth century slaves 
had taken over modern civilization and had made 
themselves useful and skilled laborers, with a knowl 
edge of the modern languages, the fundamentals of mathe 
matics and science, and acquaintance with some of the 
professions. It was a common thing to refer to a slave as 

42 The Negro In Our History 

being smart and exhibiting evidences of having experienced 
most of that mental development which usually results 
from what we now call a common school education. Some 
spoke "good English," in contradistinction to others who 
spoke "very much broken English." In other cases the 
fugitive would be credited with speaking "proper English" 
or speaking very properly. 

Brought in from the West Indies, where they had been 
in contact with all nationalities of Europe and had not 
been restricted in their development, many of these slaves 
had picked up more than the mere fragments of education. 
Slaves ft was no * unusual to find a slave speaking 

with some Spanish, French and English and exceed 
ingly good English. William Moore had a 
slave who spoke Swedish and English well. Philip French of 
Philadelphia had another who spoke Dutch and good Eng 
lish, and John Williams, of the same state, owned a Negro 
who spoke very good English and was very fluent in his 
talk. Another type of this sort was a slave who escaped 
from Charleston in 1799. He spoke both French and Eng 
lish fluently, was very artful, and succeeded in passing as 
a free man. A better example was a slave of Thomas May 
of Maryland, whom his master considered plausible and 
complacent. He could speak good English, a little 
French and a few words of High Dutch. He had been in 
the West Indies and in Canada, serving as a waiting-man 
to a gentleman, and had thereby had the opportunity of 
getting acquainted with the different parts of America, 
In addition to the mere knowledge of how to express 
themselves fluently in the modern tongues, a considerable 
number of the fugitives advertised in some parts had 
Slaves able learned to read and write. Advertising for 
to read a Negro named Cato, Joseph Hale said that 

"he speaks good English and can read and 
write. Another said, "he is an artfull fellow and can read 

Slavery In Its Mild Form 43 

and write, and it is probable that he may endeavor to make 
his escape out of the Province. And still another was de 
scribed in the terms, "He can read and write and it is 
likely that he may have a counterfeit pass. An examina 
tion of hundreds of advertisements for fugitive slaves dur 
ing the eighteenth century shows that almost a third of 
them could read and write. 10 

Another evidence as to the favorable condition of the 
Negroes during the eighteenth century is their economic 
condition. The kind of garments they wore and the manner 
in which they lived throw much light on this situation. In 
some cases they lived in houses, enjoying the same comforts 
as their masters. In other cases their quarters were much 
better than those then provided for the poor whites in 
Europe and for the indentured servants in the colonies, as 
some masters did not take much care of such laborers, since, 
when their term of service expired, they would no longer 
be of use to them. 

According to the testimony of many masters in the adver 
tisements for fugitives, they were in most cases well at 
tired. For example, a master of Philadelphia in 1721 said 
that his slave escaped, wearing "a dark brown colored coat 
and jacket, a pair of white fustian breeches, a slaves well 
gray milled cap with a red border, a pair of dressed, 
new yarn stockings with a pair of brown worsted under them 
or in his pockets." A slave owner in Maryland spoke of 
another fugitive as having "a black cloth coat, a high hat, 
white flannel waistcoat, a checked shirt, a pair of everlast 
ing breeches, a pair of yarn stockings, a pair of old pumps, 
a worsted cap, an old castor hat, and sundry other clothes. 
A Boston master in 1761 lost a slave, who had, "when he 
went away, a beaver hat, a green worsted coat, a close- 
bodied coat with a green narrow frieze cape, a gray coat, a 

10 For a treatment of the eighteenth century slave see The Journal 
of Xegro History, I, 175-189. 

44 The Negro In Our History 

black and white homespun jacket, a flannel checked shirt, 
gray yarn stockings, a flannel shirt, a bundle of other 
clothes, and a violin. White persons at that time were not 
generally better clad. 11 

In not a few other cases these fugitives are mentioned as 
persons who had not only an ample supply of clothing, but 
considerable money. John Dulin of Baltimore, in 1793, 
advertised for a slave supplied with ample funds, and 
Slaves in ^he cont ext of the advertisement indicates that 
good circum- the money was earned by the slave while hir 
ing his time. Referring to another fugitive, a 
master said : "As I expect he has a sum of money with him, 
probably he may get some one to forge a pass for him and 
pass as a free man. Some Negroes were widely known, as 
they were serving as mechanics and artisans, and a few of 
them became contractors on their own account, overseers for 
their masters, and finally freemen established in business 
for themselves. 12 

In the absence of restrictions which characterized the 
economic slavery of the following century, they had entered 
many of the higher pursuits. Some of these Negroes were 
serving as teachers and preachers, and a few were engaged 
Slaves In * n t ^ ie P rac tice of medicine, as was then corn- 
higher mon in this country. Referring to one of his 
slaves, in 1740, James Leonard of Philadelphia 
said he could "bleed and draw teeth, pretending to be a great 
doctor and very religious, and he says he is a churchman. 
In 1797 James George of Charleston, South Carolina, had 
a slave who passed for a doctor among his people and, it 
was supposed, practiced in that capacity about town. Ne 
groes were serving as privateers and soldiers in the army 
during the colonial wars and had learned so much about the 
military contests for possession in the new world that the 

11 The Journal of Negro History, I, 203. 

12 Ibid., 203. 

Slavery In Its Mild Form 


English feared that close relations between the French in 
the West and the slaves of the colonies along the coast might 
eventually lead to an understanding between the French 
and the slaves to the effect that the latter might cross the 
mountains into French territory. 

Probably the most striking evidences of the favorable 
situation of the slaves during the eighteenth century is 



their close relation with the poor whites, the most of 
whom, at that time, were indentured servants. Reduced to 
the same social status by common lot in servi- slaves and 
tude, these two classes were in many cases, poor whites, 
especially in the colonies around the Chesapeake Bay, about 
equally treated. The slaves and the indentured servants 
followed the same occupations, had the same privileges 
and facilities, and experienced together the same pleasures. 

46 The Negro In Our History 

Living on this common plane, these two classes soon pro 
ceeded to intermarry. In 1720 Richard Tilghman of Phila 
delphia complained that his mulatto slave, Richard Molson, 
had rim away in company with a white woman named 
Mary, who, it was supposed, passed as his wife, and with a 
white man named Garrett Choise, and Jane, his wife. A 
mulatto servant man in Philadelphia named Isaac Crom 
well ran away with an English servant woman named Anne 
Greene, in 1745. Two years later, Ann Wainrite, a servant 
woman of New Castle County, ran away, taking with her a 
Negro woman. 13 

These close relations between the blacks and the inden 
tured servants later caused unusual dissatisfaction. Laws 
were therefore enacted to prevent this interbreeding of the 
races. In 1661 the preamble, of such a law in Maryland 
Dissatis- said, "And forasmuch as divers freeborn 

faction. English women, forgetful of their free condi 

tion, and to the disgrace of our nation, do intermarry with 
negro slaves, by which also divers suits may arise, touching 
the issue of such women, and a great damage doth befall 
the master of such Negroes, for the prevention whereof, for 
deterring such free-born women from such shameful 
matches, ~be it enacted: That whatsoever free-born women 
shall intermarry with any slave, from and after the last 
day of the present assembly shall serve the master of such 
slave during the life of her husband ; and that all the issues 
of such free-born women so married, shall be slaves as their 
fathers were. And be it further enacted: That all the 
issues of English, or other free-born women, that have al 
ready married Negroes shall serve the master of their par 
ents, till they be thirty years of age and no longer." 14 

This, however, did not seem to prevent the miscegenation 

is The Journal of Negro History, I, 206. 

14 This social status is more extensively treated in The Journal of 
Negro History, I, 206-216, and TT, 335-353. 

Slavery In Its Mild Form 47 

of the two races, for planters sometimes married white 
women servants to Negroes in order to transform such ser 
vants and their offspring into slaves. This happened in the 
case of Irish Nell, a servant woman brought to Miscege- 
Maryland by Lord Baltimore and sold later to nation, 
a planter when the proprietor returned to England. The 
proceedings instituted to obtain freedom for her offspring 
by her Negro husband occupied the attention of the courts 
of Maryland for a number of years, after which the peti 
tion was finally granted. This procedure was especially 
legislated against in 1681, by a measure which penalized 
this custom then obtaining among the planters. The inter 
breeding of the races, however, in spite of the laws against 
it, continued. The public was burdened with so many 
illegitimate mulatto children that it became necessary to 
frame laws compelling the persons responsible to maintain 
these unfortunate waifs, and making the Negroes or the 
white persons concerned servants or slaves for a certain 
number of years. 

In Virginia it was necessary to take the same action. 
Hugh Davis was whipped there in 1630 because he was 
guilty of defiling his body by lying with a Negro. In 1622 
the colony imposed fines for fornication with a Negro, but 
did not restrict intermarriage until 1691. Ac- Efforts to 
cording to this law, if any free English woman separate 
should have a bastard child by a Negro or theraces - 
mulatto, she should pay the sum of fifteen pounds sterling, 
and in default of such payment she should be taken into 
the possession of the church wardens and disposed of for 
five years, and such illegitimate children should be bound 
out as servants until they reached the age of thirty. If the 
woman in question happened to be already in servitude, five 
years were added to the term for which she was then bound. 
This same law was further elaborated and extended by the 
Virginia law of 1753. Here, however, it developed, just as 


The Negro In Our History 

in the case of Maryland, that these laws failed to remedy the 
prevailing evil, and that State found itself with an unusually 
large number of illegitimate mulatto children on its hands. 
The officials hit upon the plan of binding them out, as was 
done in the case of David James in 1727, one Malachi 
on a plantation, and another free Negro in Norfolk 
County in 1770. 


North Carolina also undertook to put an end to this 
miscegenation. That colony provided in 1715 for the usual 
laws restricting the intercourse of the two races. Clergy 
men officiating at mixed marriages were penalized. These 
precautions, however, failed to meet the requirements, and 
the custom continued in North Carolina just as it had else 
where, in spite of the fact that the law of 1741 legis 
lated against "that abominable mixture and spurious issue, 

Slavery In Its Mild Form 49 

which hereafter may increase in this government by white 
men and women intermarrying with Indians, Negroes, Mu- 
lattoes or Mustees." It was enacted that if any man or 
woman, being free, should intermarry with such persons, he 
should be fined fifty pounds for the use of the parish, and 
any white servant woman found guilty of such conduct 
should have two years of service in addition to the time for 
which she was already bound out. 

This custom obtained in other parts where the Negroes 
were found in smaller numbers, and because of the scarcity 
of such population was checked with greater difficulty. 
Massachusetts enacted a law against it in 1705. Pennsyl 
vania took action in 1725. These laws were Difficulties 
extended and made more rigid in the course of in separating 
time, as the custom gave more and more dis- tneraces - 
satisfaction. It was a long time, however, before it had 
very much effect in New York, and still longer in Pennsyl 
vania. This intermixture endured, and when in 1780, 
during the struggle for the rights of man, this law was 
repealed, mixed marriages became common. But when 
the ardor of the revolutionary leaders had become much 
diminished towards the close of the eighteenth century, 
there set in a decided reaction against this miscegenation. 
It was therefore extensively agitated throughout communi 
ties where Negroes were found in large numbers, and vari 
ous petitions came from those sections praying that inter 
marriage of the whites and blacks be pro- Agitation 
hibited. The first petition of consequence against 
came from Green County in 1820. Such a ****. 
marriage was the cause of a riot in Columbia in 1834, and 
another of a riot in Philadelphia in 1849. In 1838 mem 
bers of the Constitutional Convention engaged in a 
heated discussion of the custom. The agitation, how 
ever, was generally ineffective, for race admixture con 
tinued, as is evidenced by the fact that one-fifth of 

50 The Negro In Our History 

the Negroes in the State in 1800 were mulattoes and 
that in 1860 this proportion had increased to one-third. 

Persons who professed seriously to consider the future 
of slavery, therefore, saw that miscegenation, and especially 
the concubinage of white men with their female slaves, in 
troduced a mulatto race whose numbers would become dan- 
The Danger of g erous ^ the affections of their white parents 
miscegenation were permitted to render them free. The 
Americans of the future would thereby be 
come a race of mixed breeds rather than a white and a 
black population. As the lust of white persons for those 
of color was too strong to prevent race admixture, the 
liberty of emancipating their mulatto offspring was re 
stricted in the slave States, but the custom of selling them 
became common. 

These laws, therefore, eventually had their desired effect. 
They were never intended to prevent the miscegenation of 
the races, but to debase to a still lower status the offspring 
of the blacks, who, in spite of public opinion, might under 
Laws finally other circumstances intermarry with the poor 
effective. white women. The more important objective, 

too, was to leave the women of color without protection 
against white men, who might use them for convenience, 
while white women and black men would gradually grow 
separate and distinct in their social relations. Although 
thereafter the offspring of blacks and whites did not di 
minish, instead of being gradually assimilated to the type of 
the Caucasian they tended to constitute a peculiar class, 
commonly called people of color, having a higher social 
status than that of the blacks, but finally classified, with all 
other persons of African blood, as Negroes. 



AFTER the patriarchal form of slavery became engrafted 
upon our civilization, the world-wide struggle for the rights 
gf man worked a decided improvement in the condition of 
the Negro. There had always been some opposition to 
slavery from the very time it was first introduced. 1 The 
founders of Pennsylvania undertook to rid ar i y 
that colony of the perpetual servitude of the objections to 
imported blacks by providing that the children 
should become free at the age of fourteen. Efforts were at 
first made to keep the institution out of Georgia, for the 
reason that slaves were not vigorous enough to furnish de 
fense for a frontier colony and would starve the poor 
white laborers. William Usselinx proposed to prohibit its 
introduction in the Swedish colonies, because African slave 
labor would be less profitable than that of the Europeans. 

More striking than these arguments were those of the 
Puritans and Quakers, based on religious principles. The 
religious element believed in slavery as connected in some 
way with religion. Although not advocates of Religious 
social equality for the blacks, the New Eng- bodies op- 
land colonists believed in equality before God posec 

i For a lengthy discussion see M. S. Locke s Antislavery in Amer 
ica from the Introduction of the African Slaves to the Prohibition 
of the Slave Trade, pp. 1-157; and C. G. Woodson s The Education 
of the Negro Prior to 1861, Ch. III. Valuable information may be 
obtained from The Journal of Negro History, Vol. I, pp. 49-68; Vol. 
II, pp. 37-50, 83-95, 126-138. 


52 The Negro In Our History 

and, therefore, in the freedom of the body. Having the 
same idea, Roger Williams protested against the enslave 
ment of Pequot Indians in 1637. John Eliot and Cotton 
Mather attacked the institution because of its abuses. In 
1701 Justice Sewell presented his convincing argument 
Puritans. against it in his essay entitled The Selling of 

Joseph. The Puritans felt that slavery was the particular 
offense that called down the avenging wrath of God, and not 
wishing to make money of it, sought at first to restrict it to 
lawful captives taken in just wars. They felt that it was 
perilous to salvation in that the souls of the captives were 
often neglected. 

Among the Quakers, who unlike the Puritans, believed in 
social equality as well as equality before God, the anti- 
slavery movement met with more success. The Quakers 
Quakers. noticed especially the cruel treatment of slaves 

and the vices resulting from the system. They also endeav 
ored to prove that the system was prejudicial to the interests 
of all in that it prevented the poor whites from finding em 
ployment, promoted idleness among the rich, cut off the 
immigration of industrious Europeans, and precluded 
the prosperity of whites already in the land. 

These religious antislavery attacks, of course, were met 
by various other arguments. Some said that Negroes were 
slaves because of the curse of Canaan ; others because they 
Proslavery were ignorant and wicked, and might, there- 
^nfislavery fore re J oice over their opportunity to be led 
arguments. to Christ through enslavement by the Chris 
tian white race. Ralph Sandif ord inquired : "If these Ne 
groes are slaves of slaves, whose slaves must their masters 
be ? " 2 Elihu Coleman, replying to the argument that Ne 
groes should be enslaved because of their wickedness, said : 
"If that plea would do, I believe that they need not go far 

2 Ralph Sandiford, Brief Examination, Ch. IV, p. 5. 

The Negro and the Rights of Man ,53 

for slaves as now they do. " 3 Seeing that the difference of 
race was the main thing, the Quakers of Germantown, Penn 
sylvania, said: "Now, though they are black, we cannot 
conceive there is more liberty to have them slaves, than it is 
to have other white ones. There is a saying that we shall do 
to all men like as we will be done to ourselves, making no 
difference of what generation, descent or color they are. 
Here is liberty of conscience which is right and reasonable. 
Here ought also to be liberty of the body. 4 This argu 
ment was further elaborated by George Keith, John Hep 
burn, William Burling and Benjamin Lay, all of whom 
were men of influence in shaping the thought of the 

This protest against slavery tended to become more and 
more religious. Sandiford said: "Shall we go to Africa 
for bread and lay the burden which appertains to our 
bodily support on their shoulders? Is this washing one 
another s feet, or living by the Gospel, or Ralph Sandi- 
maintaining liberty and property? And to ford s attack, 
live on another s labor by force and oppression, is this lov 
ing mercy ? And to keep them slaves to us and our posterity 
to all eternity, is this walking humbly with God?" 5 De 
nouncing all slaveholders as sinners, Benjamin Lay said: 
"Slaves are bound to them; so are they to the Benjaminlja y 
Devil, and stronger, for as death loosens one, 
it fastens the other in eternal Torment if not repented and 
forsaken." He styled as a sort of devils that preach to hell 
rather than to Heaven those ministers who, in leaving their 
homes on Sunday to preach the "Gospel of glad tidings to 
all men and liberty to the captives, directed the slaves to 

a Elihu Coleman, Testimony, p. 17. 

4 Germantown Friends Protest against Slavery in A. B. Hart s 
American History Told by Contemporaries, Vol. II, section 102, pp. 

s Ralph Sandiford s Brief Examination, 

54 The Negro In Our History 

work to maintain them in pride, idleness, laziness and full 
ness of bread, and sins of Sodom. 6 

These arguments were not merely empty protests but 
ideas translated into action by the Quakers. They pro 
moted manumission by individual owners, and by 1713 
Manumission worked out a definite scheme for the liberation 
promoted. O f {} ie Africans and their restoration to their 
native land, after having been prepared beforehand by in 
struction in religion and the fundamentals of education. 
Their protests against the purchase of Africans seriously 
impaired the market for slaves in Philadelphia by 1715, and 
decidedly checked the importation of slaves into Pennsyl 
vania in 1743. 

In later years the work of the Quakers became more 
effective. Most of the slaves of Quakers in New England 
and the Middle States were by moral suasion and religious 
Results coercion manumitted by the time of the Amer- 

among the lean Revolution and in the Southern States not 
Quakers. longl a ter ^ cloge of the cen t ul y. No such 

effective work was accomplished by any other body of 
Christians. Among the Congregationalists there were heard 
such protests as that of Samuel Hopkins of Newport and 
that of Ezra Stiles, the President of Yale College. Samuel 
Webster of Salisbury, and Nathaniel Niles and William 
Gordon of Roxbury also attacked the evil, but their group 
did not then make an organized effort for the extermination 
of the system. 

These efforts in later years became more successful, not 
so much because of the forceful preachments of the sects 
but on account of the new impetus given the movement by 
forces set to work during the period following the French 
After the and Indian War and culminating in the 
French and spread of the nascent social doctrine which 
Indian War. effected the American Revolution. The Brit- 

Benjamin Lay, All Slave-Keepers Apostates, pp. 92-93. 

The Negro and the Rights of Man 55 

ish, as a result of the military triumph of Wolfe at Quebec 
and Clive in India, had come into possession of vast terri 
tory. Parliament, under the leadership of Grenville, 
Townshend and North, hoped to incorporate these conquests 
into the empire and compel them to defray the expenses in 
cident to the execution of the plan by enforcing the Naviga 
tion Acts, which had all but fallen into desuetude. Long 
since accustomed to freedom from such restraint, the colo 
nists began to seek in law and history facts with which they 
disputed the right of Parliament to tax America, and on the 
basis of which they set forth theories justifying the re 
ligious, economic and political freedom of man. 

During this period the colonists of the more democratic 
order obtained first toleration and finally religious freedom 
for their more popular sects. These were the Quakers, 
Methodists, Baptists and Presbyterians. Most Toleration 
of these at that time accepted the Negroes as and the 
human beings and undertook to accord them Negro, 
the privileges of men. For the Negroes this meant larger 
opportunities for religious development and intellectual 
progress, and finally, citizenship in the more liberal colonies, 
when political leaders imbued with the idea of the un- 
alienable rights of man joined these religious bodies in the 
struggle for the freedom of the Negroes. These efforts of 
religious groups, formerly operating independently along 
parallel lines, finally culminated as one united movement 
when political leaders, impelled by the spirit of universal 
liberty, joined hands with theologians and humanitarians 
to translate these theories into vigorous action. 

In this struggle appeared some of the most forceful and 
logical protagonists who united the religious protests with 
that of the rights-of-man theory justifying universal liberty. 
In 1767 Nathaniel Appleton insisted that the The Rights 
slaves should not only "be treated with a re- of man. 
spect agreeable" but that the institution should be abol- 

56 The Negro In Our History 

ished. If the West Indies, as some then contended, could 
not be cultivated without slave labor, "let them sink then," 
said he, "for it is more honorable to seek a support by 
begging than by theft." 7 Anthony Benezet, a French 
Huguenot, who, in Philadelphia, became a member of the 
Society of Friends because of their antagonism to slavery, 
boldly attacked the institution and the slave trade as in 
consistent with man s natural rights. John Woolman, one 
of the fathers of the Friends, carried the rights-of-man 
theory to its logical conclusion, insisting that liberty is the 
right of all men, and that slaves being fellow-creatures of 
their masters had a natural right to be free to discharge the 
functions of citizenship. 

Playing their part in the antislavery drama, the Presby 
terians took the position that slavery was wrong because it 
subjected the will of the slave to that of the master. The 
Presbyterians. Baptists often attacked the institution with 
such zeal that some of them became known as the Emanci 
pating Baptists. The Methodist Episcopal Church, in 
fluenced by John Wesley, declared at its conference in 1786 : 
"We view it as contrary to the golden law of God and the 
prophets, and the unalienable rights of mankind, as well as 
every principle of the Revolution, to hold in deepest abase 
ment, in a more abject slavery than is perhaps to be found 
in any part of the world, except America, so many souls 
that are capable of the image of God. 8 Strenuous efforts 
were then made to excommunicate slaveholders and espe 
cially those known as ministers. 9 

This success, however, was not necessarily due to the 

7 Nathaniel Appleton, Considerations on Slavery, p. 19. 
s Lucius Matlock, History of American Slavery and Methodism. 
p. 29. 

a While the Quakers, however, discouraged the growth of the 
institution among their people, and actually exterminated it, the 
other sects kept the question in its agitated state until it finally 
divided several of them before the Civil War. 

The Negro and the Rights of Man 57 

work of the clergy of the liberal sects. It was their effort 
supported by these political leaders who applied the prin 
ciples of the Declaration of Independence to Political 
the Negro. The same theological doctrines leaders and 
and political theories which impelled the colo- the Negro - 
nists to rise against the home country to establish the free 
government and religious liberty for which they left their 
homes in Europe, caused them also to contend that it was 
wrong for the whites to exploit the blacks. In many cases 
the foremost advocates of the rights of the colonists were 
also advocates of the riglit of the Negroes to be free, al 
though there were many who contended that the principles 
of the Declaration of Independence did not apply to the 
Negroes, as slaves were not constituent members of our 

Finding it difficult to harmonize their holding men in 
bondage with the assertion of the right of all men to be 
free, however, the revolutionary leaders boldly met the 
question. When James Otis was arguing the Meeting 
case of the Writs of Assistance, showing the the issue, 
immunity of the colonists from such violation of the laws 
of nature, he did not forget the Negroes, who, he said, 
should also be freed. It is little wonder, then, that John 
Adams, who heard the argument, shuddered at the doc 
trine taught and the consequences that might be derived 
from such premises. Patrick Henry soon discovered that 
his own denunciation of the clergy and other agents of roy 
alty in America was broad enough to establish the right 
of the Negro to freedom, and later expressed himself ac 

Thomas Jefferson, the philosopher of the Revolution, 
found among other grounds for the justification of the re 
volt aganst Great Britain that the King had The position 
promoted the slave trade. Jefferson incorpor- of Jefferson, 
ated into his original draft of the Declaration of Independ- 

58 The Negro In Our History 

ence an indictment of George III to the effect that he had 
violated the "most sacred rights of life and liberty of a 
distant people, who never offended him, captivating them 
into slavery in another hemisphere or to incur miserable 
death in their transportation thither." Though not so 
outspoken, there stood with Jefferson almost all of the fath 
ers of the American Revolution, even those in the South, 
like Henry Laurens, George Wythe, George Mason, and 
George Washington. 

This new interest in the Negro during the American 
Revolution secured to the race an appreciable share in de 
fending the liberty of the country. 10 One cause of the 
The new Boston Massacre was that a slave, out of love 

freedom and of country, insulted a British officer. In the 
the Negro. clagh itgelf r i spus Attucks, another Negro, 

was one of the first four to shed blood in behalf of American 
liberty. During the war numbers of Negroes, like Lemuel 
Haynes, served as minute men and later as regulars in the 
ranks, side by side with white men. Peter Salem distin 
guished himself at Bunker Hill by killing Major Pitcairn, 
a number of other Negroes heroically rescued Major Samuel 
Lawrence, and Salem Poore of Colonel Frye s regiment 
acquitted himself with such honor at the battle of Charles- 
town that fourteen American officers commended him to 
the Continental Congress. 

The organization of Negro soldiers on a larger scale as 
separate units soon followed after some opposition. The 
reasons for timidity in this respect are various. Having 
Negro units the idea that the Negroes were savages who 
proposed. should not be permitted to take part in a 

struggle between white men, Massachusetts protested 
against the enlistment of Negroes. The Committee of 

10 This military history is well treated in W. B. Hartgrove s The 
Negro Soldier in the American Revolution, in The Journal of Negro 
History, Vol. T, pp. 110-131. 

The Negro and the Rights of Man 59 

Safety, of which John Hancock and Joseph Ward were 
members, had the opinion that as the contest then between 
Great Britain and her colonies respected the liberties and 
privileges of the latter, the admission of any persons but 
freemen as soldiers would be inconsistent with the princi 
ples supported and would reflect dishonor on the colony. 
Although this action did not seemingly affect the enlistment 
of free persons of color, Washington, in taking command of 


the army at Cambridge, prohibited the enlistment of all 
Negroes. The matter was discussed in the Continental Con 
gress and as a result Washington was instructed by that 
body to discharge all Negroes, whether slave or free. When 
the enlistment of Negroes came up again in the council of 
the army, it was unanimously agreed to reject slaves and by 
a large majority to refuse Negroes altogether. By these 
instructions, Washington, as commander of the army, was 
governed late in 1775. 

60 The Negro In Our History 

Many of the colonists who desired to avail themselves of 
the support of the Negroes were afraid to set the example, 
Fear of thinking that the British might outstrip them 

arming in playing the same game and might arm 

Negroes. ^ Q ^ ^ Q Indians and Negroes faster than the 

colonies could. A few were of the opinion that the Negroes, 
seizing the opportunity, might go over to Great Britain, as 
was the case with the delegates from Georgia to the Conti 
nental Congress, who had grave fears for the safety of the 
South. They believed that if one thousand regular troops 
should proclaim freedom to all Negroes, twenty thousand 
of them would join the British in a fortnight. 

As a matter of fact, they had good reason for so thinking. 
When Lord Dunmore, Governor of Virginia, was driven 
from the colony by the patriots, he summoned to his support 
Negroes several hundred Negroes to assist him in re 

armed by gaining his power, promising them freedom 

t from their masters. The British contemplated 

organizing a Negro regiment in Long Island. Sir Henry 
Clinton proclaimed in 1779 that all Negroes in arms should 
be purchased from their captors for the public service and 
that every Negro who might desert the " Rebel Standard" 
should have security to follow within the British lines any 
occupation which he might think proper. 

These plans, moreover, were in some parts actually car 
ried out. The British made an effort to embody two Negro 
regiments in North Carolina. Between 1775 and 1783 the 
Negroes with State of SoutK Carolina lost 25,000 Negroes, 
the British. w h o wen t over to the British. Probably three- 
fourths of all the Negroes then in Georgia were lost to the 
Americans. One-third of the men by whom Fort Cornwallis 
was garrisoned at the siege of Augusta were Negroes loyal 
to the English. A corps of fugitive slaves calling themselves 
the King of England s soldiers harassed for several years 

The Negro and the Rights of Man 61 

the people living on the Savannah River, and there was 
much fear that the rebuffed free Negroes of New England 
would do the same for the colonists in their section. 

It was necessary, therefore, for the leaders of the country 
to recede from this position of refusing to enlist Negroes. 
Washington within a few weeks revoked his order prohibit 
ing their enlistment. The committee in the Negroes 
Continental Congress considering the matter enlisted, 
recommended the reenlistment of those Negroes who had 


served faithfully, and Congress was disposed to leave the 
matter to the commonwealths, not wishing to infringe upon 
what they called States rights. Most men of foresight, 
however, approved the recognition of the Negro as a sol 
dier. James Madison suggested that the slaves be liber 
ated and armed. Hamilton, like General Greene, urged 
that slaves be given their freedom with the sword, to se 
cure their fidelity, animate their courage, and influence 
those remaining in bondage by an open door to their emanci- 

62 The Negro In Our History 

pation. Henry Laurens of South Carolina, then in eternal 
dread of the disaffection of the slaves, said he would advance 
Proposal of those wno are unjustly deprived of the rights 

Henry O f mankind to a state which would be a proper 


gradation between abject slavery and perfect 

liberty, and would have a corps of such men uniformly 
clad and equipped to operate against the British. John 
Laurens, the son of Henry Laurens, was permitted by the 
Continental Congress to undertake such enlistment in South 
Carolina, but when he brought his plan before the legis 
lature he was defeated by a " triple-headed monster that 
shed the baneful influence of avarice, prejudice and pusil 
lanimity in all our assemblies. J n 

In other parts of the country, however, the interest in 
the Negro was such that they regained the former standing 
in the army. Free Negroes enlisted in Virginia, and so 

Negro soldiers many slaves deserted their masters for the 
in Virginia. army that the g tate enacted in 1777 a law 

providing that no Negro should be enlisted unless he had 
a certificate of freedom. But later many Virginia slaves, 
with the promise of freedom, were sent to the army as 
substitutes for freemen, and to prevent masters of such 
Negroes from reenslaving them, the State passed an act of 
emancipation, proclaiming freedom to all who had enlisted 
and served their term faithfully, and empowered them to 
sue in forma pauperis, should they thereafter be unlawfully 

In his strait at Valley Forge, Washington was induced by 
General Varnum to enlist a battalion of Negroes in Rhode 
Solving the Island to fill his depleted ranks. The Khode 
th b s em in Island assembly acceded to this request, giv 
ing every effective slave the liberty to don the 
uniform on the condition that upon his passing muster 

11 Sparks, Writings of George Washington, VIII, 322, 323. 

The Negro and the Rights of Man 63 

he would become absolutely free and entitled to all the 
wages, bounties, and encouragements given to any other 
soldier. Connecticut undertook to raise a Negro regiment, 
and New York in 1780, promising masters the usual bounty 
land to purchase their slaves, proclaimed freedom to all 
bondmen thus enlisting for three years. This sort of 
action governed the enlistment of Negroes in New Hamp 
shire, where it operated to 
exterminate slavery. In 
1781 Maryland resolved 
to raise 750 Negroes to 
be incorporated with the 
other troops. Massachu 
setts, at the suggestion 
from Thomas Kench, con 
sidered the question of 
organizing in separate 
battalions the Negroes 
serving in the ranks 
among white men, think 
ing that in units by them 
selves they would exhibit 
a better esprit de corps 
and that a larger number 
would enlist; but as the 
suggestion led to a heated 
debate in the legislature and to blows in the coffee houses 
of Boston, nothing definite was done. 

In estimating the services rendered by the black troops 
of the American Revolution, observers and officers were 
loud in their praise. Speaking of the valor displayed by 
the Rhode Island regiment, the Marquis de opinions as 
Chastellux said : At the passage of the ferry to Negro 
I met a detachment of the Rhode Island regi 
ment, the same corps we had with us last summer, but they 

LEMUEL HAYNES, a Negro soldier 
in the American Revolution and 
later a distinguished Congregational 
preacher to white people in New 

The Negro In Our History 


General and Commander In Chief of the Forces of the United 
States of America. 

TH K 8 K arc to CERTIFY that the Bearer hereof 

in the -x -.* v V v>,v? >^V / .< Regiment, having faithfully 
ferved the United State* /*v- - < *x ./ . ^ -:? 

X -.-v / ; / ! r> ulu j IM-JHJ, titliftfd fur the War unly, i* 

hereby DIHHAHUFI} Irum the Aou-iirau Army, , 

O J V 1C N ai H K A h ( u 4 ft -r a 4 * iJir 

By Hi & I-. *.< it, $ t N , 


R Ii (, I s i ! H t n it, the |t,...k 
(*{ the Regiment, 

(. "/ 

1 111 , above ,. , V, ;". * ** 

h;u ltta iioiiorcd with thr,Ii y A J> <* J of M Ji k t J !-,*, \XV 
Yctii faithful tH ivuc, .* / , /,. 

111! , wuliin <, M K 1 I I I (, , { J ilwl) H.,I avail 
Fkarer ;u> a Difcliarge, uuul tin- K.-fih. .u>ii o( ti 
treaty ol J*caccj previous t^ whi^h IJHH, anl ijuii} 
noo tljcitof fhaJJ !M made, II* j* t<; l w .oniuiticd a btiing oa 

G K O H O F W ,A ,s If f N O T tf 


The Negro and the Rights of Man 65 

since have been recruited and clothed. The greater part 
of them are Negroes or mulattoes ; but they are strong, ro 
bust men and those I have seen had a very good appear 
ance." Referring to the behavior of Negroes who fought 
under General Greene, Lafayette said that in trying to 
carry the commander s position the enemy repeated the 
attempt three times and was often repulsed with great 
bravery. One hundred and forty-four of the soldiers hold 
ing this field were Negroes. Speaking of the troops who 
took part in the battle of Long Island, Dr. Harris, a vet 
eran, said : Had they been unfaithful or even given way 
before the enemy, all would have been lost. Three times 
in succession they were attacked with more desperate valor 
and fury by well-trained disciplined troops and three times 
did they successfully repel the assault, and thus preserved 
our army from capture. Negro troops sacrificed themselves 
to the last man in defending Colonel Greene in 1781 when 
he was attacked at Point Bridge, New York. Referring to 
the battle of Monmouth, Bancroft said, "Nor may history 
omit to record that of the Revolutionary patriots who on 
that day offered their lives for their country more than 700 
black men fought side by side with the white. According 
to Lecky, "the Negroes proved excellent soldiers in a hard- 
fought battle that secured the retreat of Sullivan when 
they three times drove back a large body of Hessians." 

Some of these Negro soldiers emerged from the Revolu 
tion as heroes. A Negro slave of South Carolina rendered 
Governor Rutledge such valuable services in this war that 
by special act of the legislature in 1783 his wife and chil 
dren were liberated. Because of his unusual fortitude and 
valor in battle, the State and the people of Georgia honored 
Austin Dabney, a mulatto, who took a conspicuous part in 
many skirmishes in the South. Fighting under Elijah 
Clark, he was severely wounded by a bullet which in pass 
ing through his body wounded him for life. He received 

66 The Negro In Our History 

a pension from the United States Government and was by 
an act of the legislature of Georgia given a tract of land. 
He subsequently accumulated considerable property, at 
tained a position of usefulness among his white neighbors, 
had the respect and confidence of high officials, and died 
mourned by all. 

The result of the increasing interest in the Negro was 
that with the exception of South Carolina and Georgia, a 
decided step forward in the extermination of slavery was 
taken during the revolutionary epoch. The black codes were 
iphe considerably moderated and laws facilitating 

progress of manumission were passed in most of the 
on colonies. Vermont, New Hampshire and Mas 
sachusetts exterminated the institution by constitutional pro 
vision; Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, New York 
and Pennsylvania washed their hands of the stain by grad 
ual emancipation acts; and the Continental Congress ex 
cluded the evil from the Northwest Territory by the Ordi 
nance of 1787. 12 So sanguine did the friends of universal 
freedom become that they thought that slavery of itself 
would later gradually pass away in Maryland, Virginia 
and North Carolina. 

To prepare the freedmen for this new opportunity, 

12 Tliis prohibitory clause was: 

There shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in the said 
territory, otherwise than in the punishment of crime, whereof the 
party shall have been duly convicted: Provided always, That any 
person escaping into the same, from whom labor may be lawfully 
claimed in any one of the original States, such fugitive may be law 
fully reclaimed and conveyed to the person claiming his or her labor 
or service as aforesaid. 

Be it ordained by the authority aforesaid: That the resolutions 
of the 23d of April, 1784, relative to the subject of this ordinance, 
be, and the same are hereby, repealed, and declared null and void. 

Done by the United States, in Congress assembled, the 13th day of 
July in the year of our Lord 1787, and of their sovereignty and 
independence the twelfth. 

The Negro and the Rights of Man 67 

schools were established in almost all large groups in towns 
and cities. Efforts were made to apprentice such blacks 
to trades, to place them in the higher pur- Preparation for 
suits of labor, and to develop among them a emancipation, 
class of small farmers who might be settled on unoccupied 
lands west of the Alleghanies. In fact, this was the halcyon 
day of the Negro race prior to its emancipation. Up to the 
closing years of the American Revolution never had so 
much been done in behalf of the blacks, never had there 
been such opportunities for developing their power to 
function as citizens. And so much of an impetus was then 
given to the cause of the Negroes that despite the reac 
tion following this epoch they retained their citizenship 
intact in most parts of the North and even late in parts of 
the South, as was the case in North Carolina, where the 
Negroes voted until 1834. 

The first impulse to general improvement of the Negroes 
came through the new sects, which in this social upheaval 
attained not only toleration but freedom. As there was 
less ground for antagonism to the development Religious 
of the Negroes in this direction, many of freedom, 
them became socially equal with the white communicants, 
and some Negro churchmen trained by pious whites 
preached to audiences of the Caucasian race. Among these 
was Jacob Bishop, who so impressed his co-workers that he 
was at the close of the century made pastor of Jacob Bishop, 
the first Baptist church (white) of Portsmouth, Virginia. 
"William Lemon was at this time preaching to a white con 
gregation at Pettsworth or Gloucester, Virginia. Some 
recognition by whites was given during these years to 
Henry Evans and Ralph Freeman of North Carolina, Harry 
Hosier of Philadelphia, Black Harry of St. Eustatius, and 
Lemuel Haynes, an intelligent Negro preacher to white 
people in Connecticut. Andrew Bryan, contemporary with 


The Negro In Our History 

rnd Andrew 

Jacob Bishop, preached occasionally to the whites, but de 
voted his life to religious work among his own people. He 
George Liele was tne successor to George Liele, who, under 
the rule of the British in Savannah, had 
founded the first Baptist church of that city. 
He went with them to Jamaica, where he established the first 
Baptist church in that colony. Bryan s task, however, was 

not so easy as that of Liele. 
The Americans, who suc 
ceeded the British in au 
thority at Savannah, per 
secuted Bryan, whipping 
him whenever he attempted 
to preach. In the course 
of time, however, he ob 
tained the support of a 
few kind-hearted whites, 
who interceded in his be 
half and secured for him 
the permission to preach 
without interruption. His 
work, thereafter, made pro 
gress, and extended to Au 
gusta through the coopera 
tion of Henry Francis and others. 

Tn the circle of intellectual Negroes there stood out two 
characters more prominent than these churchmen. These 
were Phyllis Wheatley 13 and Benjamin Banneker. 14 Phyl 
lis Wheatley was a slave in a Boston family that gave her 
Phyllis every opportunity for improvement. After re- 

Wheatley. ceiving instruction for a few years she mas 
tered the fundamentals of and made unusual 

is R. R. Wright, Phyllis Wheatley. 

14 Henry E. Baker, Benjamin Banneker in The Journal of Negro 
History, Vol. Ill, pp. 99-118. 


The Negro and the Rights of Man 



..*u* AK1> Y1R.CH 



advancement in the study of Latin and History. In the 
very beginning of her career she exhibited the tendency 
to write poetry. While present-day criticism would not 
classify her as a poet, she was, in her time, a writer of such 
interesting verse that she was brought into contact with 
some of the best thinkers of that period. All of them were 
not seriously impressed 
with her actual contribu 
tion to literature, but they 
had to concede that she 
had decidedly demon 
strated that Negroes had 
possibilities beyond that of 
being the hewers of wood 
and drawers of water for 
another race. 

Benjamin Banneker was 
a character of more genius 
than that with which many 
of his white contemporaries 
were endowed. Born in 
Maryland, of a white wo 
man and black father, he 
was free, and at that time 
exercised most of the privi 
leges accorded white men. He was in a position to attend 
an elementary school, and upon the moving of Benjamin 
the well known Ellicotts to his neighborhood Banneker. 
about the time he was reaching his majority, Ban 
neker had made such advancement in science and mathe 
matics that Mr. George Ellicott supplied him with books. 
Studying these works, Banneker developed into one of the 
most noted astronomers and mathematicians of his time. 
He was the first of all Americans to make a clock, and 
published one of the first series of almanacs brought out in 


70 The Negro In Our History 

the United States. These meritorious achievements made 
him so prominent that he was sought and received by some 
of the most prominent men of the United States. Among 1 
these were James McHenry, once Vice-President of the 
United States , and Thomas Jefferson. The latter was so 
impressed with his worth that he secured for him a place 
on the commission that surveyed and laid out Washington 
in the District of Columbia. 



THE impetus given the uplift of the Negroes during the 
struggle for the independence of the country was gradually 
checked after 1783, when the States faced the problem of 
readjustment. In the organization of governments the 
States came to the conclusion that it was Emancipation 
necessary to restrain men to maintain order checked, 
and that they had to depart from some of the theories 
on which the Revolution was fought. In the elimination of 
the impracticable from the scheme of reconstruction after 
making peace with Great Britain, the proposal for the 
emancipation of the slaves was no longer generally heeded. 
In those colonies where the Negroes were not found in large 
numbers they were emancipated without much opposition 
and some of them were made citizens of the new States. 
But in those where the Negroes constituted a considerable 
part of the population there followed such a reaction 
against the elevation of the race to citizenship that much 
of the work proposed to promote their welfare and to pro 
vide for manumission was undone. 1 

Certain States of the upper South did support the move- 

iM. S. Locke, Antislavery in America, pp. 157-166; K. H. Porter, 
A History of Suffrage in the United States, Chs. II and III. C. G. 
Woodson, The Education of the Negro Prior to 1861, Chs. VI and 
VII; and A. D. Adams, The Neglected Period of Antislavery in 
America, passim. 



The Negro In Our History 

ment to abolish the slave trade, but for economic rather 
than for sentimental reasons. The prohibition of the slave 
Slave trade trade in Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and 
in the South. North Carolina did not necessarily show a 
humanitarian trend. The reasons for such action were 
largely economic. Their industry had reached a settled 
state, and the influx of more slaves, they believed, would 
lead to a decrease in the value of slaves, cause the supply of 
Southern products to exceed the demand, drain the States 
of money, and constitute a sinister influence on Negroes 
already broken in. If imported in large numbers the trade 

might force upon the com 
munities a larger number 
than could be supported, 
and instead of promo 
ting slavery might make 
instant abolition neces 
sary. Furthermore, the 
successful rebellion of the 
Negroes in Santo Do 
mingo, led by Toussaint 
L Ouverture and Desa- 
lines, brought such a 
dread of servile insurrec 
tion among the slave 
holders that many of them 
opposed the continuation 
of the, slave trade. And 
even in the radically proslavery South, as in the case of 
South Carolina, it was specifically provided that no slaves 
should be imported from this disturbed area in the West 
Indies. As a matter of fact, however, many refugees from 
Refugees Hayti had come to the ports of Baltimore, 

from Hayti. Norfolk, Charleston and New Orleans, and 
they sowed seeds of discord from which came most of the 


Reaction 73 

uprisings of Negroes during the first three decades of the 
nineteenth century. 2 

The Congress of the Confederation had very little to clo 
with slavery, as it did not care to interfere with the rights 
of the States. Slavery as a national question, however, ap 
peared in the adoption of the Ordinance of 1787, providing 
for the organization of the Northwest Terri- Slavery and 
tory. The sixth clause of that document the Ordinance 
provided that neither slavery nor involuntary c 
servitude, except for punishment of crime, should be per 
mitted in the said territory. This was enacted, of course, 
prior to the adoption of the Constitution of the United 
States and may seem to have no bearing thereon, but as its 
legality was questioned on the ground that no such power 
had been granted to the Continental Congress by the States 
or by any provision in the Articles of Confederation, it 
requires special attention. It is of importance to note that 
it was defended on the untenable ground that it was a 
treaty made by the States forming the Confederation rather 
than an agreement of the States to be organized in this ter 
ritory thereafter. The best which can be said for it, how 
ever, is that it was merely a legislative act of Congress. 3 
The convention of 1787 desired to take very little interest 
in the antislavery movement in the organization of the 
Federal Government. Oliver Ellsworth of Connecticut and 
Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts thought the The Conven- 
question of slavery should be settled by the tion of 1787 - 
States themselves. As this question came more prominently 

2 These uprisings are sot forth in Joshua Coffin s An Account of the 
Principal Slave Insurrections. See also Edwin V. Morgan s Slavery 
in New York (American Historical Association Report, 1895), pp. 
029-673; and E. B. Greene s Provincial America (The American 
Nation ) , Vol. VI, p. 240. 

3 All of these aspects of the Ordinance of 1787 are thoroughly dis 
cussed in J. P. Dunn s Indiana ; A Redemption from Slavery, Ch. VI; 
and in Clias. Thomas Hickok s The Negro in Ohio, chapter on the 
Ordinance of 1787. 


The Negro In Our History 

before this body called to frame the Constitution of the 
United States, however, it had to be considered more seri 
ously, to determine a method of returning fugitive slaves, 
the prohibition of the slave trade, and the apportionment of 

representation. When the 
South wanted the Negroes 
to be counted to secure 
larger representation on 
the population basis, al 
though it did not want 
thus to count the blacks in 
apportioning federal taxes, 
some sharp debate ensued, 
but the northern antislav- 
ery delegates were not so 
much attached to the cause 
of universal freedom as to 
advocate force their op i n i ons on the 

proslavery group and thus 
lose their support in organizing a more stable form of gov 
ernment. 4 They finally compromised by providing for rep 
resentation of the States by two Senators from each, and for 
the representation of the people in the House by counting 
all whites and five Negroes as three whites, and by further 
providing for the continuation of the slave trade until 1808, 
when it should be prohibited, and for a fugitive slave law 
to secure slaveholders in the possession of their peculiar 

Immediately after the Federal Government was organized 
there seemed to be a tendency to ignore the claims of the 
Negro. In 1789 the Quakers at their annual meeting in 
The Negro a Philadelphia and New York adopted certain 
negligible memorials praying the attention of Congress 
in adopting measures for the abolition of the 



* The Journal of Negro History, Vol. Ill, pp. 381-434. 

Reaction 75 

slave trade and, in particular, in restraining vessels from 
being entered and cleared out for the purpose of that trade. 
There came also a memorial to the same effect from the 
Pennsylvania Society for the Abolition of Slavery, bearing 
the signature of its president, Benjamin Franklin. This 
led to much discussion of the slavery question, but the me 
morials were by a vote of 43 to 11 referred to a special com 
mittee which reported March 5, 1790. On the 8th the re 
port was referred to the Committee of the Whole where it 
was debated a week. Several amendments were proposed 
and given consideration in the House. Finally the reports 
of the special committee and of the committee of the whole 
house were by a vote of 29 to 25 ordered to be printed in 
the Journal and to lie on the table. The principle of non 
interference with slavery set forth in this report determined 
for a number of years the reactionary attitude of Congress 
with respect to slavery. 5 

The report of the Special Committee was: The committee to 
whom were referred sundry memorials from the People called 
Quakers; and also a memorial from the Pennsylvania Society for 
promoting the Abolition of Slavery, submit the following report: 

That, from the nature of the matters contained in those memorials/ 
they were induced to examine the powers vested in Congress, under 
the present Constitution, relating to the abolition of slavery, and 
are clearly of opinion, 

First, That the General Government is expressly restrained from 
prohibiting the importation of such persons "as any of the States 
now existing shall think proper to admit, until the year one 
thousand eight hundred and eight." 

Secondly, That Congress, by a fair construction of the Constitu 
tion are equally restrained from interfering in the emancipation of 
slaves, who already are, or who may, within the period mentioned 
be imported into, or born within any of the said States. 

Thirdly, That Congress have no authority to interfere in the 
internal regulations of particular States, relative to the instruction 
of slaves in the principles of morality and religion; to their com 
fortable clothing; accommodations, and subsistence; to the regula 
tion of their marriages, and the prevention of the violation of the 
rights thereof, or to the separation of children from their parents; 
to a comfortable provision in cases of sickness, age, or infirmity; 
or to the seizure, transportation, or sale of free negroes; but have 
the fullest confidence in the wisdom and humanity of the Legislatures 

76 The Negro In Our History 

Congress refused also to intervene in behalf of certain 
manumitted Negroes of North Carolina, who after having 
been given their liberty by the Quakers were again reduced 
to slavery. The only action of this sort taken by Congress 
Non-inter- during its early operation was to pass the Fu- 
ventionby gitive Slave Law of 1793. This measure pro- 
Congress, vided that a master might seize his absconding 
slave taking refuge in another State, carry him before any 
magistrate and secure from that functionary authority to 
return the slave. Congress refused on this occasion to pro 
vide any safeguards to prevent the enslavement of free Ne 
groes. No sympathy could then be expected from the North, 
for while that section considered the institution an evil, it 
had not in the least increased its love for the Negro, and 
evidences of unrest among Negroes did not make conditions 
more favorable. The North did not want the Negroes, and 
those southerners who had advocated their emancipation 

of the several States, that they will revise their laws from time to 
time, when necessary, and promote the objects mentioned in the 
memorials, and every other measure that may tend to the happiness 
of slaves. 

Fourthly, That, nevertheless, Congress have authority, if they 
shall think it necessary, to lay at any time a tax or duty, not 
exceeding ten dollars for each person of any description, the importa 
tion of whom shall be by any of the States admitted as aforesaid. 

Fifthly, That Congress have authority to interdict, or (so far as 
it is or may be carried on by citizens of the United States, for 
supplying foreigners) to regulate the African trade, and to make 
provision for the humane treatment of Slaves, in all cases while on 
their passage to the United States, or to foreign ports, as far as 
it respects the citizens of the United States. 

Sixthly, That Congress have also authority to prohibit foreigners 
from fitting out vessels, in any port of the United States, for trans 
portation of persons from Africa to any foreign port. 

Seventhly, That the memorialists be informed, that in all cases 
to which the authority of Congress extends, they will exercise it for 
the humane objects of the memorialists, so far as they can be 
promoted on the principles of justice, humanity, and good policy. 


The Committee of the Whole House, to whom was committed the 
report of the committee on the memorials of the People called Quak- 

Reaction 77 

were confronted with the question as to what should be 
done with them when freed. 

The reaction in the North was generally manifested in 
the change of the attitude of the whites toward the blacks, 
who had during the struggle for the rights of man become 
connected with schools and churches throughout the sec 
tion. It was therefore necessary for Negroes to establish 
independent churches of their own like those Reaction in 
founded by Andrew Bryan in Georgia and the cllurcn - 
Joseph Willis in Mississippi. Bearing it grievously that the 
people of color were suffering from a militant prejudice in 
the Methodist church, Richard Allen and James Varick es 
tablished independent organizations out of which developed 
the African Methodist Episcopal Church and the African 

era, and of the Pennsylvania Society for Promoting the Abolition 
of Slavery, report the following amendments: 

Strike out the first clause, together with the recital thereto, and 
in lieu thereof insert, "That the migration or importation of such 
persons as any of the States now existing shall think proper to 
admit, cannot be prohibited by Congress, prior to the year one 
thousand eight hundred and eight." 

Strike out the second and third clauses, and in lieu thereof insert, 
"That Congress have no authority to interfere in the emancipation 
of slaves, or in the treatment of them within any of the States; it 
remaining with the several States alone to provide any regulations 
therein, which humanity and true policy may require." 

Strike out the fourth and fifth clauses, and in lieu thereof insert, 
"That Congress have authority to restrain the citizens of the United 
States from carrying on the African trade, for the purpose of supply 
ing foreigners with slaves, and of providing by proper regulations for 
the humane treatment, during their passage, of slaves imported by 
the said citizens into the States admitting such importation." 

Strike out the seventh clause. 

Ordered, that the said report of the Committee of the Whole House 
do lie on the table. 

See Text of both reports in the House Journal, 1st Cong., 2d Sess. ; 
the report of the special committee is also in the Annals of Congress, 
1st Cong., II, 1414, 1415, and in Amer. State Papers, Miscellaneous, 
I, 12. Full reports of discussions are in the Annals; condensed in 
Benton s Abridgment, I. See also von Hoist s United States, I, 89- 
94; Parton s Franklin, II, 606-614; Wilson s Rise and Fall of the 
Slave Power, I, 61-67. 


The Negro In Our History 

Methodist Episcopal Zion Church. 6 In the same manner the 
opportunities for Negroes to acquire education became less 
frequent, as men tended to veer around to the exploitation 
conception of the Negro as a being desirable only so far as 
he answered some servile purpose of the white man. In 
education, however, the Negroes were too generally pro 
scribed and they were eco 
nomically too weak for in 
dependent action. 

The treatment of the 
question of slavery in 
the purchase of Louisiana 
subsequently caused some 
debate when it was pro 
vided that in acquiring 
The the territory 

Louisiana of Louisiana 
from France 

the privileges and immun 
ities enjoyed by those cit 
izens under the govern 
ment of the French would 
be guaranteed by the 
United States. This led 
to some future constitu 
tional questions, for the reason that since Louisiana was 
slaveholding prior to the purchase, the institution was there 
by perpetuated in that territory. On the other hand, many 
of the Negroes of that territory belonged to the body of 
citizens exercising the same rights as the whites. When, 
a few years thereafter, Louisiana followed in the wake 
of the other reactionary States of the South and under 
took to restrict the privileges of the free Negroes, it 
was contended that the action of the State conflicted with 

KICHARD ALLEN, the founder of the 
A. M. E. Church 

C. G. Woodson, The Education of the Negro Prior to 1861, p. 86. 

Reaction 79 

this treaty guaranteeing those persons who were citizens 
at the time of the purchase the full enjoyment of the privi 
leges which they had under the French regime. On the 
occasion of the enforcement of a law of that State depriv 
ing certain free Negroes of the right to attend school, this 
question was brought up in Mobile, Alabama, which at 
the time of the purchase belonged to the Louisiana terri 
tory. By special ordinance of the city council, however, 
these citizens were exempted from the operations of this 

The great factors in bringing about the reaction, how 
ever, were primarily economic. Dur 
ing the second half of the nineteenth 
century, inventors, beginning with 
Watt, who built the first steam en 
gine, brought out such mechanical 
appliances as the wool-combing ma 
chine, the spinning jenny, the power- 
loom, and finally Whitney s famous 
cotton gin. These revolutionized in 
dustries in the modern world, and in AN EABLY COTTON Gix 
facilitating the making of cloth in 
creased the demand for cotton, which led to the plantation 
system requiring the large increase in the importation of 
slaves. The cotton gin, a machine of revolving cylinders, 
one for tearing the lint from the seeds and another 
arranged to remove the lint from the first cylinder, sim 
plified the process of seeding cotton, and in releasing 
labor for production multiplied its output in a few 
years. Cotton cloth was thereby cheapened and the de 
mand for it so extensively increased that the South 
became a most inviting field in which was rooted one 
of the greatest industries of the world. Before the end 
of the second decade of the nineteenth century the States 
of the lower South became inalterably attached to slavery 

80 The Negro In Our History 

as an economic advantage in supplying the cheap labor it 
required and began to denounce those who persisted in dub 
bing it an evil. 

With this increase in the demand for slaves there came 
numerous petitions for the reopening of the African slave 
trade in the lower South. The Northern and Middle States 
Increase in early prohibited the slave traffic, holding it 
the demand as a grievance against George III that they 
were not permitted to do so earlier. Maryland 
prohibited it in 1783. North Carolina checked it by a 
rather high import duty in 1789, and South Carolina pro 
scribed it by law for sixteen years. Georgia alone took no 
action except to provide for its own security in prohibiting 
the importation of insurrectionary slaves from the West 
Indies, the Bahamas and Florida, and to require free 
Negroes to furnish certificates of their industry and honesty. 

An early effort was made to repeal the prohibitory pro 
vision against the traffic in South Carolina, but it was de 
feated. Those interested in the trade proceeded to smuggle 
slaves along the coast, and the efforts to enforce the pro 
hibitory law were without success. Finally, in 1805, after 
much persistence, the slave-traders in that State carried 
their point, putting through the bill to remove all African 
restrictions but continuing the exclusion of Negroes from 
the West Indies and slaves from other States failing to have 
certificates of good character. 

The action of South Carolina was interpreted as opening 
the door for all of the atrocities formerly practiced by the 
slave traders. North Carolina, New Hampshire, Vermont, 
The Slave Maryland and Tennessee, therefore, requested 
trade their Congressmen to make an effort to have 

objectionable. the Constitution of the Unit ed States so 

amended as to prohibit the importation of Negroes from 
Africa and the West Indies. Congress refused to act in this 

Reaction 81 

case, not only because it had become reactionary, but for the 
reason that the time provided by the Constitution for the 
abolition of the slave trade would arrive in 1808. At the 
next session of Congress bills to prohibit the trade were 
introduced, but no action was taken. 

In 1806 Jefferson took up the question in his annual mes 
sage, urging Congress to interpose its authority to withdraw 
citizens of the United States from all further participation 
in those violations of human rights which had Jefferson on 
been "so long continued on the unoffending abolition, 
inhabitants of Africa. 7 7 Senator Bradley of Vermont 
promptly introduced a bill with the provisions that in 
terstate slave trade along the coast should be prohibited 
after the close of the year 1807 and that importation of 
slaves should be a felony punishable by death. 8 In the 
House, where proslavery Congressmen managed the fram 
ing of the bill, it prohibited importation, provided fines 
and forfeiture of the slaves from abroad on board such 
vessels, and for the sale at public auction of slaves thus 
smuggled in. As it was evident that this bill would not 
prevent the enslavement of the blacks concerned, Mr. Sloan 
of New Jersey proposed to amend this bill so as to free the 
slaves thus forfeited. This proposition to turn loose in the 
South Negroes just from Africa evoked from Early, of 
Georgia, the prophecy of the prompt extermination of such 
Negroes in the Southern States. But speaking for his peo 
ple, Smilie of Pennsylvania felt that he could not tolerate 
the idea of making the Federal Government a dealer in 
slaves. Such an act, thought he, would be unconstitutional. 
This provision was, after some excitement, stricken out. 

An effort was then made to substitute imprisonment for 

7 Annals of Congress, 1806-1807, p. 14. 

s The debate on the prohibition of the slave trade is treated in 
W. E. B. DuBois s Suppression of the African Slave Trade. 

82 The Xegro In Our History 

the death penalty, only to cause much more confusion. 
After more exciting discussion the House laid aside its bill 
Efforts in for tlie one from tlie Senate, from which it 
behalf of promptly eliminated the death, penalty and 

slave trade. p rov ided a penalty of imprisonment of not 
less than five nor more than ten years. The prohibition 
as to participation in coastal slave trade was eliminated also. 
The bill was then passed and sent back to the Senate. The 
Senate accepted this with the modification that the coastal 
trade provision be applied only to vessels of less than forty 
tons. There was still some opposition from Early of Geor 
gia because he thought the bill in that form futile for the 
prevention of smuggling from Florida. John Randolph be 
lieved it interfered with a man s right of private property. 
The bill as passed penalized with imprisonment the importa 
tion of slaves from abroad, prohibited the slave trade 
along the coast in vessels of less than forty tons, required 
of larger vessels conformity to certain stipulated regula 
tions, and placed smuggled slaves when seized at the disposal 
of the State where they might be landed. 

This law, of course, was a victory for the lower South, 
then demanding an increase in the slave labor supply. 
With these evasive provisions favoring State control, the 
Victory for measure was never effective and the illicit 
the proslavery trade flourished throughout the South with- 
group * out much interference. In fact, it was im 

possible to secure a conviction under this law until the Civil 
War, so effective had been public opinion in the South 
against the prohibition of the trade. This was the culmina 
tion of the reaction against the Negro in Congress. For 
economic reasons the South had pitted itself against the 
Constitution and, that Negroes might be further exploited 
by the whites, finally secured a majority sufficiently lacking 
in moral courage to evade carrying out the spirit of the 
fundamental law. 



The untoward condition of the Negro in the South re 
sulted, too, from the unusually rapid spread of cotton 
culture and the extension of slavery in the uplands of the 
South, where it had been considered imprac- Spread of 
ticable. The people of the frontier section, cotton culture, 
who had early constituted the opposition to the aristocratic 
pretensions of the slaveholders near the coast, gradually be 
came indoctrinated in the tenets of the slaveholding aris 
tocracy and began to develop the same thought as to politics 


and religion as obtained near the coast. In the seaboard 
States, the interior of which lay among rugged hills or be 
yond seemingly insurmountable mountains, the hopes of 
democracy lingered longer because of the difficulty experi 
enced in extending slavery beyond these barriers ; but even 
these parts had to yield ground to the growing evil, despite 

84 The Negro In Our History 

the warning given by statesmen in the prolonged debate re 
sulting in the admission of Missouri as a slave State. 9 

In the same way the introduction of the culture of sugar 
in Louisiana accelerated the trade in that territory. By 
an additional act of Congress dealing with the prohibition 
The sugar of the slave trade in that State a loophole was 
industry. j e f t j n ^he j aw so ^hat ft was construed to 

permit the importation of slaves from the other parts of 
the United States. Slave traders in some of the border 
States where the worn-out soil made the system unprofitable, 
moreover, supplied the Louisiana Territory in spite of 
restrictions to the contrary. They evaded the laws by pur 
chasing slaves ostensibly for employment at home but only 
to be sold later in Louisiana after a brief stay to comply 
with the letter of the legal requirements. The result was 
an influx of speculators buying sugar land and bringing in 
slaves, until before the nineteenth century was far advanced 
the increasing number of estates reported and their large 
production placed the -culture of sugar in the front rank 
of the industries of the South. 

In this situation, then, the South soon reached the posi 
tion that slavery is not an evil and by no means a sin, and 
that the only use to be made of a Negro is to impress him 
into the service of the white man. No care was taken of 
The situation the blacks as of persons to be elevated, for 
in the South. ^ e y were to be beasts of burden. Negro 
women were often worked too hard to bear children, and it 
mattered not if they did not, since it was deemed less ex 
pensive to drive an imported slave to death during a few 
years and buy another in his place, than to undertake to 
increase his efficiency by methods of improvement. They 
were herded in pens like cattle, sold to do hard labor from 
the rising to the setting of the sun, given quarters in habi- 

9 See the discourse of John Quincy Adams in the Appendix. 

Reaction 85 

tations no better than the stables for animals, and fed upon 
the coarsest food known to be given to human beings. To 
prevent their escape, police control was effected by a patrol 
system which governed their going and coming so as to 
prevent them from assembling for help or from securing 
assistance or advice from sympathetic white friends and 
free Negroes. 



AGAINST this system, which held in perpetual servitude 
millions of blacks, and prevented the elevation of the thou 
sands of free persons of color to the dignity of citizenship, 
persons of sympathetic tendencies had for years persistently 
Antislavery protested. 1 There was some antislavery sen- 
groups, timent from the very beginning of the intro 
duction of slavery into the United States. Here and there 
in the colonies there were persons who seriously objected 
to the rigor to which the slaves were subjected in the de 
velopment of the industries of the New World. These first 
protests, however, were largely on religious grounds, for the 
reason that the exploiting methods gave the Negroes no 
time for mental development or religious experience. Men 
who had at first accepted slavery as a means of bringing 
these heathen into a Christian land where they might un 
dergo conversion to the faith, bore it grievously that selfish 
masters ignored the right of the Negroes to be enlightened. 

Protests appeared more frequently during the eighteenth 
century, when religious freedom and liberty developed to 
the extent that the blacks were given some consideration. 
This antislavery sentiment, however, was not due pri- 
Effect on niarily to cruel treatment of the slaves. In 
the Negro s fact, the first Negro slaves were largely house 
servants, enjoying the treatment usually re- 

1 The early antislavery movement has been well treated in M. S. 
Locke s Antislavery in America from the Introduction of the African 
Slaves to the Prohibition of the Slave Trade, in Alice D. Adams s 
Xeglected Period of Antislavery in America, and in the annual 
reports of The American Convention of Abolition Societies. 


A Declining Antislavery Movement 87 

ceived among the ancient patriarchs. Some of them were 
servants indentured for a certain period, and even the 
slaves during the eighteenth century had many opportuni 
ties for obtaining freedom. The free Negroes had a social 
status of equality with that of the poor whites. 

A bold attack on slavery, therefore, did not follow, as 
most of the objections raised during the eighteenth century 
were economic rather than sentimental, considering slavery 
prejudicial not only to the interests of the Mild attack 
slaves themselves but to those of a country on slavery, 
desirous of economic betterment. As already observed, 
however, the struggle for the rights of man was productive 
of such a healthy sentiment in behalf of universal liberty 
that almost all of the fathers of ,the American Revolution 
favored a gradual extermination of the institution of slavery 
on the grounds that the Negroes had a natural right to be 
free. Antislavery societies were organized in the North 
and South immediately after the Revolution to secure to the 
slaves the fruits of the victory in behalf of the rights of 
man. To unify the efforts of these organiza- Abolition 
tions a national body, the American Conven- societies, 
tion of Abolition Societies, was formed to meet annually. 
A study of the records of these societies shows that the 
membership consisted largely of Quakers and such other 
enlightened persons of the more liberal connections as were 
disposed to attack the institution. These organizations 
were intended to mold public opinion in favor of the en 
slaved Africans with a view to exterminating slavery. 

They did not contemplate instant abolition. The ma 
chinery for promoting the uplift of the Negroes, as further 
stated by them, had to do with methods of gradual eman 
cipation. According to their scheme, they Gradual 
raised funds to purchase slaves, encouraged emancipation, 
their emancipation, and provided for prospective freedmen 
opportunities for mental development and religious instruc- 

88 The Negro In Our History 

tion that they might properly function in society on becom 
ing citizens. These bodies maintained, moreover, a sort of 
vocational guidance committee in each locality to look out 
for apprenticing Negroes to trades and to find employment 
for them in the various fields when they had developed into 
efficient mechanics. 

The strongest influence against slavery which had hither 
to developed, as already observed, came from the Quakers. 
After ridding themselves of slavery, they were, during the 
first decade of the nineteenth century, working strenuously 
to abolish the institution in other parts. They had, how- 
Antislavery " ever, used passive means in reaching their 
Quakers. ends, and for that reason had not gained very 

much ground ; but they had done effective work in Virginia 
and North Carolina, and when they could not operate there 
as they desired they sent their slaves and others to the 
Northwest Territory where they had a new opportunity. It 
is doubtless due to their influence in North Carolina that a 
distinguished man like Judge William Gaston could call 
on the State to extirpate slavery. They, no doubt, had 
much to do with the fact that an appeal to abolish slavery 
in the North Carolina General Assembly failed only by the 
casting vote of the speaker, and that the institution was 
strongly attacked in the Virginia Convention in 1829-30, 
and in the legislature the following year. 2 

The inevitable effect of the reaction was sectionalism. 
As a more militant antislavery movement developed from 
the industrial revolution, which led to the extension of 
The results *he plantation system, requiring more slaves, 
of the the South became gradually estranged from 

the North. The open violations of the act 

2C. G. Woodson, Education of the Negro Prior to 1861; S. B. 
Weeks, Southern Quakers and Slavery, and R. R. Wright, Negro 
Rural Communities in The Southern Workman, Vol. XXXVII, pp. 

A Declining Antislavery Movement 89 

prohibiting the African slave trade and the impetus given 
the domestic traffic to supply these plantations with Ne 
groes, led to the bold attack on the institution during the 
first quarter of the nineteenth century. The cotton gin, al 
though invented as early as 1793, had just then begun to do 
its work. During the first antislavery period there were no 
violent protests, as the workers concerned contented them 
selves with making an occasional speech or writing for a 
newspaper an article inveighing against the institution and 
setting forth plans for exterminating the evil. A consider 
able portion of the abolition literature which influenced 
public opinion appeared in the Genius of Universal Emanci 
pation, published by Benjamin Lundy. Through this organ 
the sentiments of a large number of antislavery people liv 
ing in the Appalachian highland found expression. They 
were descendants of the Germans and Scotch-Irish immi 
grants who came to this country to realize their ideals of re 
ligion and government, differing widely from those of the 
aristocratic planters who maintained a slavocracy near the 
coast. A few of these settlers of the uplands were gradually 
indoctrinated in the tenets of slavery in the proportion that 
the institution extended towards the mountains, but a 
large number of them continued even until the Civil War to 
work for the destruction of the institution. Out of this 
group developed a number of manumission societies in 
North Carolina, Tennessee and Kentucky. These organiza 
tions manifested the first radicalism the country had up to 
that time experienced. 

Here we see the tendency not only to regard the institu 
tion of slavery as an economic evil but to consider it as a 
sin of which the Christian people should be ashamed. In 
1810 Louis Duprey informed professing Slavery an 
Christians that the great transgressions of economic evil, 
slave commonwealths would lead to overwhelming judg 
ments of God. Thinking of the evil of slavery, Thomas 


The Negro In Our History 

Jefferson, an uplander, said : "I tremble for my country 
when I reflect that God is just." David Barrow, of Ken 
tucky, denounced in a pamphlet the inconsistency in the 
use of religious formulas in connection with the bequests 
of slaves, and advocated immediate emancipation. About 
the same time, John D. Paxton, a preacher in Kentucky 
and Virginia, believed in the "moral evil of slavery and the 
duty of Christians to aid slaves and free them." Daniel 

Raymond of Maryland 
branded slavery as a 
"foul stain on our na 
tional escutcheon, a can 
ker which is corroding 
the moral and political 
vitals of our country." 
Declaring slave traffic a 
curse to the master, John 
Randolph, of Virginia, 
said in Congress in 1816, 
"Do as you would be 
done by. Every man 
who leaves that great high 
road will have the chalice 
which he himself has 
poisoned the chalice of 
justice, even-handed jus 
tice put to his own lips 
by the God of nature, who does not require abolition so 
cieties to carry his purpose into execution." 

The spirit of antislavery, however, was declining in the 
South throughout the first half century of the republic. 
Antislavery Free discussion of slavery was extended by 
cause in the ardent debate over the Missouri question 

the South. from 1819 t() 1821 In thig con test the pro- 
slavery and antislavery forces for the first time nationally 

THOMAS JEFFERSON, an antislavery 

A Declining Antislavery Movement 91 

clashed. The question then was whether or not slave 
territory should be extended. By that time it was evident 
that the South was preparing to support the institution, 
whereas the North, in defense of free labor, had uncon 
sciously become radically opposed to the extension of 
slavery. In so expressing itself in reply to the defense of 
the institution, the whole country became alarmed and the 
thinking public was impressed thereby with the idea that 
the country was then face to face with a problem requiring 
serious consideration. The United States had by this time 
developed a feeling of nationalism. 

These protests, however, were scattered and they had 
little effect, for the abolition movement gradually became 
a sectional one. The antislavery societies which held wide 
sway until about the beginning of the nine- The decline of 
teenth century lost ground from year to year, the antislav- 
The lower South early exterminated them, er y movem *nt. 
and, in the border States, where they had had extensive in 
fluence, they soon claimed only a few adherents. In 1827 
there was one such society in Connecticut, none in Delaware, 
two in the District of Columbia, twelve in Illinois, eight in 
Kentucky, eleven in Maryland, two in Massachusetts, one 
in New York, fifty in North Carolina, four in Ohio, sixteen 
in Pennsylvania, one in Khode Island, twenty-five in Ten 
nessee, eight in Virginia. Less than a decade later almost 
all southern States in which most of these societies had 
developed ceased to support them, and the American Con 
vention became largely a northern organization, and de 
cidedly so, when it fell under the influence of the radicals. 

As a sequel and a cause of the reaction came the bold at 
tempts of the Negroes at insurrection. 3 Unwilling to un 
dergo the persecutions entailed by this change of slavery 
from a patriarchial to an economic system, a number of 

3 For additional information as to the rising of slaves see Joshua 
Coffin s Slave Insurrections, 


The Negro In Our History 

Negroes endeavored to secure relief by refreshing the tree 
of liberty with the blood of their oppressors. The chief 
Slave source of these uprisings came from refugees 

insurrections, brought to this country from Santo Domingo 
in 1793 and from certain free Negroes encouraged to extend 

a helping hand to 
their enslaved breth 
ren. The first ef 
fort of consequence 
was Gabriel s Insur 
rection in Virginia 
in the year 1800. It 
had been so deliber 
ately planned that 
it was thought that 
white men were con 
cerned with it, but 
an investigation, ac 
cording to James 
Monroe, showed that 
there was no ground 
for such a con 
clusion. It was 
brought out, how 
ever, that these Ne 
groes, through channels of information, had taken over 
the revolutionary ideas of France and were beginning to 
use force to secure to themselves those privileges prized 
by the people in that country. 

The insurrectionary movement was impeded but could 
not be easily stopped. At Camden in 1816, and some years 
later at Tarboro, Newberne and Hillsboro, North Caro 
lina, there developed other such plots of less conse- 
At Camden. quence. For some years these outbreaks were 
frequent around Baltimore, Norfolk, Petersburg and New 


A Declining Ant isla very Movement 93 

Orleans. In 1822, Charleston, South Carolina, however, 
was the scene of a better planned effort to effect the lib 
eration of the slaves by organizing them to assassinate 
their masters. The leading spirit was one Denmark 
Denmark Vesey, an educated Negro of Santo Vesey. 
Domingo, from which he had brought his new ideas as to 
freedom. It was observed that these Negroes in Charleston 
had been reading the slavery debate of the Missouri Com 
promise and were emboldened by the attacks on the institu 
tion to effect its extermination. In all of these cases the 
plans of the Negroes were detected in time to foil them, and 
the conspirators were promptly executed in such a bar 
barous way as to serve as a striking example of the fate 
awaiting those who, refused to be deterred from such efforts. 

An extensive scheme for an insurrection, however, came 
in 1828 from David Walker of Massachusetts, who, in a 
systematic address to the slaves throughout the country, 
appealed to them to rise against their masters. Walker 
said: "For although the destruction of the r> av id 
oppressors God may not effect by the op- Walker s 
pressed, yet the Lord our God will bring other 
destruction upon them, for not unfrequently will he cause 
them to rise up one against the other, to be split, divided, 
and to oppress each other, and sometimes to open hostilities 
with sword in hand. 4 

But the most exciting of all of these disturbances did not 
come until 1831, when Nat Turner, a Negro insurgent of 
Southampton County, Virginia, feeling that he was or 
dained of God to liberate his people, organized Nat Turner s 
a number of daring blacks and proceeded ** suicie 
from plantation to plantation murdering their masters. 
Having obtained great influence over the minds of his fol 
lowers, he was in a position to interest a much larger 

* David Walker s Appeal, p. 5. 


The Negro In Our History 

number of them than other Negroes who had undertaken 
to incite their fellows to self-assertion. With the aid of six 
desperate companions, who finally increased tenfold, he 
killed sixty whites. After a few days of slaughter and local 
warfare, Turner and his followers were finally driven into 
the swamps by the State militia and United States troops. 
On the first day over a hundred Negroes were killed. After 

a few days of resistance 
they were overpowered and 
imprisoned. Twelve Ne 
groes were promptly con 
victed and expatriated, but 
Nat Turner and twenty 
of his accomplices were 
hanged. An effort was 
made to connect William 
Lloyd Garrison and David 
Walker with this rising, 
but no evidence to this ef 
fect could be found. Gar 
rison disclaimed any con 
nection with the insurrec 
tion. The thought then 
that slaves themselves 
could cause such a disturb 
ance struck terror to the very heart of the South, which 
thereafter lived in eternal dread of servile insurrection. 

This was sufficient to convince the South that if economic 
slavery was to be successful, the one thing needful was 
to close up the avenues of information to the Negroes. The 
Stringent ^ rst e ff r t in this direction was to extend the 
measures in slave code so as to penalize a number of deeds 
which theretofore had not been punishable 
by law. The Southern States enacted more stringent 
measures to regulate traveling and the assembling of slaves, 


A Declining Antislaveiy Movement 95 

to make them ineffective in assembling for insurrection pur 
poses or for information from contact with other persons 
or from schools. These stringent measures applying to 
traveling and assembly were not restricted to slaves but 
made applicable also to the free Negroes and mulattoes. 
The wording of these laws differed to a certain extent, but 
they usually provided that it would be unlawful for Negroes 
or slaves above a certain number, usually five, to assemble 
without the permission of their masters, even for wor 
ship, unless the services were conducted by a recognized 
white minister or observed by certain discreet and repu 
table persons." Some States prohibited the immigration 
of free persons of color, and because of the circulation of 
bills, literature, and such inflammatory pamphlets as that of 
David Walker, there were enacted several laws to the 
effect that whosoever should write, print, publish or dis 
tribute such literature so as to spread discontent among 
the slaves would be imprisoned for life or put to death. 
It was still further provided that all persons who should 
teach or cause to be taught any slave to read or write 
should suffer the same penalty. 

In many of the Southern States, however, the effort was 
made not only to regulate the traveling and assembling 
of the free Negroes but to get rid of them entirely by giving 
them so many days to leave the State. 5 The Free Negroes 
Missouri General Assembly enacted in 1819 a driven out. 
law providing that there should be no more assemblages of 
slaves or free Negroes or mulattoes, mixing or associating 
with such slaves for teaching them to read, and when that 
State framed its constitution on being admitted into the 
Union it incorporated into that document a provision to 
prevent the immigration of free Negroes into that State. 
Louisiana prohibited the immigration of free persons of 

s See C. G. Woodson s A Century of Negro Migration, p. 40; and 
The Education of the Negro Prior to 1861, pp. 151-178. 


The Negro In Our History 

color in 1814, and in 1830 excluded such persons from the 
State, giving them a definite period to leave. 

In 1831 Mississippi followed in the footsteps of her 
sister State. In cases where free Negroes were not driven 
out, as in South Carolina, certain stringent measures to 
safeguard the interests of the slaveholders materially in 
terfered with the economic 
welfare of these persons 
of color. In 1834, when 
South Carolina provided 
that there should be no 
teaching of Negroes by 
white or colored friends 
and that their schools 
should be disestablished, it 
provided also that persons 
of African blood should not 
be employed as clerks or 
salesmen in or about any 
store or house used for 
trading. This legislation 
did not disgrace the statute 
books of the border States 
of Kentucky, Maryland 
and Tennessee, but public 
opinion there sometimes had the same effect. 

Against this system of repression, however, a few promi 
nent men of the South continued to protest. Chancellor 
Harper of South Carolina felt that it was shameful to 
Protests of prevent the blacks from obtaining sufficient 
sympathetic knowledge to read the Bible. Daniel R. Good- 
!rs loe, of North Carolina, was of the same opin 
ion. Southerners of the most radical type, moreover, did not 
like to live under the stigma with which they were branded 
by William Jay, who charged them with having closed up 


A Declining Antislavery Movement 97 

the Bible in denying the Negroes the revelation of God, 
while at the same time they styled themselves Christians. 
Some opposition was, therefore, shown, and in certain parts 
it was found impossible to execute restrictive measures be 
cause of the healthy public opinion against them. The chil 
dren of the sympathetic aristocratic slaveholders, and espe 
cially the wives and children of ministers, hardly ceased to 
teach Negroes to read as much as the Bible. Under the di 
rection of Bishop Capers of South Carolina, Reverend Josiah 
Law and Reverend C. C. Jones of Georgia, and Bishop Polk 
of Louisiana, much was accomplished by a new system of 
training called religious instruction. Under this system 
the Negroes were not allowed to read and write but were 
taught to commit to memory in catechetical form the 
principles of religion and instructive parts of the Bible. 6 
This reaction, however, was not peculiar to the slave 
States. 7 In the proportion that free Negroes, finding it im 
possible to live in the South, sought refuge in the North, 
race prejudice and friction increased. These Reaction in 
culminated in race riots, easily developed in tlie North - 
that section at the time the country was receiving a number 
of Irish and German immigrants who competed directly 
with the Negroes as laborers. Negroes were not permitted 
to enter the academy thrown open to them at Canaan, New 
Hampshire, in 1834 ; the people of New Haven at a public 
meeting of their leading citizens strenuously protested 
against establishing there a manual labor school for the 
education of Negroes; and the citizens of Canterbury 
actually imprisoned Prudence Crandall by securing special 
legislation to that effect because she persisted in admitting 
Negro girls to her seminary, which in becoming attractive 

s See also C. G. Woodson s A Century of Negro Migration, pp. 

7 This is extensively treated in C. C. Jones s Religious Instruction 
of Negroes and in C. G. Woodson s Education of the Negro Prior to 
1861, Ch. VIII. 

98 The Negro In Our History 

to that race might increase the colored population of that 
city to the displeasure of its, white citizens. 

Riots of a graver sort were frequent throughout the 
North during these years. The first sanguinary conflicts 
of consequence took place in Ohio. In 1826 a mob under- 
Race riots in took to drive the Negroes out of Cincinnati, 
the North. i n 133 6 another mob not only attacked Ne 
groes but broke up also the abolition press, which was sup 
posed to encourage the influx of persons of that class. 
In 1841 there was in the same city a local race war which for 
a week disturbed that metropolis to the extent of resulting 
in the death of a number of persons and the expulsion of 
many Negroes from the city. On a " Black Friday," Janu 
ary 1, 1830, eighty of the two hundred Negroes living in 
Portsmouth, Ohio, were driven out of the city as undesir 
ables. A mob of Germans drove John Randolph s Negroes 
from their own land in Mercer County, Ohio, where he had 
provided for their settlement and freedom. 

The East offered no exception to this rule. The citizens 
of Philadelphia began to burn Negro homes in 1820, sought 
to expel the blacks from the city and State in 1830 and 
Riots in actually mobbed them in 1834, destroying 

the East. their churches and other property. In 1838 

another conflict developed into a riot which resulted in the 
destruction of Pennsylvania Hall and the Colored Orphan 
Asylum in that city. When the Negroes in 1842 undertook 
to celebrate the abolition of slavery in the West Indies, an 
other occasion was afforded for race conflict, which meant a 
loss of life and property to the Negroes. Pittsburg, fol 
lowing the example of Philadelphia, had such a riot in 1839. 
In 1834, this rule of the mob in New York City and Pal 
myra led to riots during which the Negroes were attacked 
along- the streets and driven from their homes. 



THE plantation system resulting from the industrial rev 
olution, the cause of the radical reaction, made slaveholding 
a business of apparently tremendous possibilities. Large 
sums were invested in the enterprise, and the The rise of 
South entered upon its career as a borrowing the plantation, 
section. There was a rush of southern white men from the 
older States along the coast to the fertile cotton lands of 
the Gulf district as soon as they were opened for settlement. 
Many came almost empty handed, but the majority of those 
taking up large tracts of land brought their slaves with 
them. The number of slaves increased forty or fifty per 
cent between 1810 and 1820, and they came thereafter in 
droves. 1 

On their way to the Southwest the slaves experienced the 
usual hardships of a long drive. The inhuman traders 
placed the children in wagons and forced the men and 
women to walk from twenty-five to fifty miles The internal 
a day. Often traders encountered on the way slave trade - 
bought some of the slaves in transit, after subjecting them 
to such an examination of their teeth and other parts 
as to determine their age and health. Featherstonaugh 
mentions his meeting in southwestern Virginia a camp of 

i A. B. Hart, Slavery and Abolition, Chs. IV, V, VI, and VII; U. B. 
Phillips, American Negro Slavery, pp. 151-401; W. E. B. DuBois, 
The Negro, Ch. IX; M. B. Hammond, The Cotton Industry; Debow s 
Review; Williams Wells Brown, The Rising Son, 265-318; G. W. 
Williams, History of the Negro Race in America, Vol. I, pp. 115-324; 
and J. B. McMaster s History of the United States, VII, pp. 238-370. 


100 The Negro In Our History 

Negro slave drivers just packing up to start. He said: 
They had with them about three hundred slaves who had 
bivouacked the preceding night in chains in the woods. 
These they were conducting to Natchez, on the Mississippi 
River, to work upon the sugar plantations in Louisiana. 
It resembled one of the comes spoken of by Mingo Park, 
except that they had a caravan of nine wagons and single- 
horse carriages for the purpose of conducting the white 
people and any of the blacks that should fall lame. The 
female slaves, some of them sitting on logs of wood while 
others were standing, and a great many little black children, 
were warming themselves at the fire of the bivouac. In 
front of them all, and prepared for the march, stood in 
double files about two hundred men slaves, manacled and 
chained to each other." 

Referring to one of these parties, Basil Hall said : l In 
the rear of all came a light-covered vehicle with the master 
and mistress of the party. Along the roadside scattered at 
A drove intervals we observed the male slaves trudging 

of slaves. m f ron t. At the top of all, against the sky 

line, two men walked together apparently hand in hand, 
pacing along very sociably. There was something, however, 
in their attitude which seemed unusual and constrained. 
When we came nearer accordingly, we discovered that this 
couple were bolted together by a short chain riveted to 
broad iron clasps secured in like manner round the wrists. 3 

Josiah Henson, a Negro brought into this traffic, said: 
"Men trudged on foot, the children were put into the 
wagon, and now and then my wife rode for a while. We 
Josiah went through Alexandria, Culpepper, Fau- 

Henson. quier, Harper s Ferry, Cumberland, and over 

the mountains to the Natural Turnpike to Wheeling. In 

2 G. W. Featherstonaugh, Excursion through the Slave States, Ch. I, 
p. 120. 

s Basil Hall, Travels in Vorth America, Ch. ITT, pp. 128-129. 

Economic Slavery 


all the taverns along the road were regular places for the 
droves of Negroes continually passing along under the 
system of internal slave trade. At the places where we 
stopped for the night, we often met Negro drivers with 
their droves, who were almost uniformly kept chained to 
prevent them from running away. I was often invited to 
pass the evening with them in the bar-room their Negroes, 

in the meantime, lying 
chained in the pen, while 
mine were scattered around 
at liberty." 4 

Edwin L. Godkiii said : 
"The hardships these Ne 
groes go through who are 
attached to one of these mi 
grant parties baffles de 
scription. They trudge on 
foot all day 
through mud 
and thicket without rest or 
respite. Thousands of miles 
are traversed by these 
weary wayfarers without 
their knowing or caring 
why, urged on by whip and 
in full assurance that no change of place can bring any 
change to them. Hard work, coarse food, merciless flog 
ging, are all that await them, and all that they can look 
to. I have never passed them staggering along in the 
rear of the wagons at the close of a long day s march, the 
weakest furthest in the rear, the strongest already utterly 
spent, without wondering how Christendom, which eight 
centuries ago rose in arms for a sentiment, can look so 


JOSIAH HEN SON, prototype of 
Uncle Tom s Cabin 

* Josiah Henson, Uncle Tom s Story of His Life, p. 53. 

102 The Negro In Our History 

calmly on at so foul and monstrous a wrong as this Ameri 
can slavery. 5 

This migration, of course, had a disastrous effect on the 
seaboard States from which so many masters and their 
slaves were drawn. Industry was paralyzed on the lower 
Atlantic coast. There were the worn-out lands with de- 
The decline of ser t e d homes once characterized by abundance 
the seaboard and luxury, ruined and distressed debtors 
wondering how to find relief, humiliated plant 
ers with no way of escape but migration. Efforts at fer 
tilization to rebuild the waste places were tried, and with 
this the slave States near the Atlantic experienced a sort 
of revival about the middle of the nineteenth century. 
This was due also, some think, to the demand for slaves 
as laborers on the railroads which were then being con 
structed to unite the South and to connect it with the West. 

To supply the Southwest with slaves, however, the do 
mestic slave trade became an important business, and the 
older States which suffered from the migration devoted 
Slave themselves to slave breeding for this market, 

breeding. j n ^he wor k entitled Slavery and the Internal 

Slave Trade in the South, it is estimated that seven of 
the older States annually exported 80,000 to the South. 
These were Virginia, Maryland, North Carolina, Kentucky, 
Tennessee, Missouri and Delaware. Professor Asa Martin 
thinks that Kentucky furnished 5,000 a year. This flour 
ished the more because of the restrictions on the African 
slave trade. One writer estimates the number of slaves 
exported from Virginia at 120,000. It is difficult to figure 
out numbers, however, for the documents bearing on the 
sale of slaves did not always determine exactly what their 
destination would be. Men sometimes bought them appar 
ently for private use, concealing their ultimate aim to sell 

B The North American Review, Vol. CLXXXX, pp. 46, 47. 

Economic Slavery 


them South. Except when forced by economic necessity 
or in the case of insubordination, some masters refused to 
sell their slaves if they knew that they would have to un 
dergo the tortures of servitude in the cotton and sugar 
districts. It is also difficult to determine who were the 
interstate slave traders. Almost all commission merchants 
dealt in slaves as in any other property, and they were not 
anxious to be known as being primarily interested in a 



work which was in no sense popular among the more nearly 
civilized slaveholders. 

Some of these masters, in advertising slaves for sale, 
specifically stated that they were not to be sold out of the 
State, and persons who were bold enough to proclaim them 
selves as such traders were mentioned with Slaves 
opprobrium in the older slave States. 6 The sold south, 
presence of such traders in Winchester, Virginia, in 1818, 

6 I. E. McDougle, Slavery in Kentucky in The Journal of Negro 
History, Vol. II, pp. 226-230. 

104 The Negro In Our History 

evoked the comment : * * Several wretches, whose hearts 
must be as black as the skins of the unfortunate beings who 
constitute their inhuman traffic, have for several days been 
impudently prowling about the streets of this place with 
labels on their hats exhibiting in conspicuous characters 
the words, * Cash for Negroes. Some time in the thirties 
of the last century a master of Danville, Kentucky, sold 
a Negro woman to a regular slave trader. Upon learning 
this, threats of a mob to do him violence compelled this 
master to go in quest of the trader, from whom he re 
purchased the woman at a decidedly increased price. 7 Yet, 
intense as this feeling was, Delaware was the only slave 
State to legislate against the interstate slave trade. Mary 
land, Kentucky and Louisiana undertook somewhat to 
regulate it. 

This enlightened minority could not stop this traffic, and 
it became for a number of centers in the border States a 
source of much revenue. Dealers bought up slaves in the 
A source of local markets and confined them in jails, 
revenue. taverns, warehouses or slave pens, while await 

ing buyers from the Southwest. The average slave pen 
had an administration building for the slaves, a court for 
the women and one for the men, with gates, barracks, and 
eating sheds. Some of the slave pens, however, were no 
more than statjes for cattle or horses. On the convenient 
day they were placed on the sales block and auctioned off 
to the highest bidder. The slaves themselves, sometimes for 
personal advantage in determining their buyers, aided or 
impeded the sale by singing their own praises or proclaim 
ing their shortcomings. Thus they spent weeks and months 
until the owner drove a bargain with a trader, who removed 
them in coffles to their doom in the rising cotton kingdom. 

7 The Journal of Negro History, Vol. Ill, p. 229. 

Economic Slavery 105 

In this way the Negroes were made the means of exploit 
ing the new Southwest by accelerating the westward move 
ment from the South. The slaves were thereby taken from 
a declining section, where they had become such a burden 
that these States would have necessarily become antislavery, 
had they remained. These blacks were carried to the cotton 
district, where they were apparently profitable servants in 
developing a new industry. The 85,000,000 pounds of cot 
ton produced in 1810 doubled by 1820, doubled again during 
the next decade, and doubled still once more by 1840. This 
was then about two-thirds of the cotton production in the 
world. After that period there was no question as to our 
leadership in the production of this raw material. 

What, then, was the plantation system, serving as the 
basis of this large cotton industry? This was the method 
of cultivating an estate of hundreds and sometimes thou 
sands of acres. The administration centered The 
in the residence of the planter or, in case of plantation, 
absentee ownership, in the home of the manager of the 
estate. Nearby stood the stable, smoke house, corn house, 
and a little farther away appeared the garden, potato field, 
watermelon patch, and the like. Somewhat distant from this 
central building were the homes of the slaves, commonly 
known as quarters. These were in most cases rude huts, 
often with dirt floors and so poorly constructed as to fur 
nish little protection from bad weather. Furniture was 
generally lacking unless the few stools and the beds of 
straw be worthy of such designation. In some cases the 
slaves were allowed to till a patch of ground on which they 
produced their own vegetables, and some few of them were 
permitted to raise chickens or hogs. They had to look 
after these personal affairs at night, on Sundays, or holi 
days, as their whole time was otherwise required in the 
service of their masters. 


The Negro In Our History 

In the case of just a few slaves the master often worked 
with them. On larger plantations, however, slaves worked 
in gangs under masters or their overseers, if the master had 
Slaves at sufficient holdings to afford such supervision. 
work. j n the culture of rice the work could be so 

divided as to assign it as tasks, holding each slave respon 
sible for a definite accomplishment. Some few planters, like 
McDonogh of Louisiana, and Z. Kingsley of Florida, ran 


their plantations on something like the self-government 
basis. Slaves were thrown largely on their own initiative to 
earn what they could. The control was vested in courts, the 
personnel of which were slaves, and the administrative of 
ficers of which were also bondmen carrying out the man 
dates of these tribunals. Isaiah T. Montgomery of Mound 
Bayou, Mississippi, was taught with white children and 
trained as an accountant to serve in this capacity on the 
Joseph Davis plantation in Mississippi. 

Economic Slavery 107 

As a plantation was a community in itself, it had to be 
governed as such. On large plantations managed by men 
of foresight, definite rules were drawn up to determine the 
procedure of overseers and slaves. These were intended to 
maintain the government of the slaves, produce Plantation 
the largest crop possible, and at the same time management, 
to exercise such care over the bondmen as not to lose any 
of them by unnecessary harsh treatment and neglect of 
their health. On some plantations, however, masters either 
worked to their own detriment by driving their slaves to an 
untimely death, or by the absentee ownership procedure, 
permitted their overseers to do so. This was often true in 
cases in which overseers were paid by giving them a share of 
the crop. The abuses practiced by these managers caused 
many planters to brand them as being a negligent, selfish, 
and dishonest class. The situation was not any better when 
the slaves were placed under a Negro driver. 

Slaves were not generally cared for when sick. Women 
in pregnancy were more neglected than ever, and some 
worked too hard to bear healthy children. Many slaves 
were not given sufficient of the simple corn- The care 
bread, bacon and salt herrings they were al- of slaves, 
lowed, and a still larger number were not adequately 
clothed. Negroes supplemented their rations by hunting and 
trapping at night. Some of them, by working at night, 
accumulated means by which they added to the meager 
provisions for their families supplied by their masters. 
A few hoarded considerable sums with which they pur 
chased their freedom and made their way to free States 
where they established themselves anew. Others had to 
steal to obtain a subsistence, and were even encouraged to 
do so by parsimonious masters. 

Above all, punishments were crude and abusive. Be 
cause it would be prejudicial to their own economic inter 
ests, masters no longer mutilated Negroes or destroyed them 

108 The Negro In Our History 

on the wheel, as in the eighteenth century, unless it was ab 
solutely necessary; but flogging, unmerciful beating and 
even burning at the stake sometimes followed. In cases of 
unruly Negroes they were sold South, where 
they faced the alternative of either yielding 
or being punished to death. The runaway slaves were 
hunted with dogs. When brought back they were put in 
heavy iron shackles or collars and sometimes subjected to 
such tortures as drawing out the toe-nails. Those persisting 
in resisting their masters were sometimes murdered. These 
conditions, however, differed from plantation to plantation, 
according to the liberality of the master. 

The slave, after the reaction, was not generally allowed 
any chance for mental development, of course, and could 
not learn to appreciate religion. Planters in some parts, 
Enlightenment thinking that the teaching of religion might 
prohibited. j ea( j to fa Q teaching of letters, prohibited it 

entirely. The best slaves could then do for mental de 
velopment was to learn by contact and by stealth. Many a 
sympathetic person taught slaves to read, and in some cases 
private teachers were bold enough to maintain schools for 
them, as was done in Savannah, Charleston, and Norfolk. 

How some of these slaves learned in spite of opposition 
makes a beautiful story. Knowing the value of learning 
as a means of escape and having a longing for it, too, be- 
Stealing cause it was forbidden, many slaves continued 

learning. their education under adverse circumstances. 

Some of them, like Frederick Douglass, had the assistance 
of sympathetic whites who were a law unto themselves; 
others studied privately and even attended school. Chil 
dren of the clergy, accustomed to teach slaves to read the 
Bible, were, by custom, regarded as enjoying an immunity. 
Some private teachers among the whites encouraged 
Negroes to steal away to secret places where their operations 
were shielded from the zealous execution of the law. 

Economic Slavery 109 

The majority of these enlightened slaves, however, learned 
by contact, observation and dint of energy. 8 Many of them 
were employed at such occupations as to develop sufficient 
mental power to read, write, and cipher. Learning by 
"Blazon it to the shame of the South," said contact. 
Kedpath, "the knowledge thus acquired has been snatched 
from the spare records of leisure in spite of their honest 
wishes and watchfulness. Many, like Robert Williams and 
Albert T. Jones, stole enough to enable them to read with 
ease. Lott Gary heard a minister preach from the third 
chapter of St. John, and on returning home read that pas 
sage of scripture, although he had never before been taught 
to read and had not hitherto made such an effort. Dr. 
Alexander T. Augusta of Virginia learned to read while 
serving white men as a barber. President Scarborough of 
Wilberforce was taught by one J. C. Thomas, a cruel south 
erner of the bitterest type. 

In spite of their circumstances a few slaves experienced 
another sort of mental development. Being in a rapidly 
growing country where the pioneers had to make use of the 
forces of nature, here and there a slave became inventions 
an inventor. According to the opinion of of slaves. 
Henry E. Baker, an examiner in the United States Patent 
Office, slaves made certain appliances, experimenting with 
the separation of the seed from cotton, which, when observed 
by Eli Whitney, were assembled by him as the cotton gin. 
Freedmen, during these years, were more successful. While 
James Forten, a free Negro of Philadelphia, was making 
a fortune out of his new device which he perfected for 
handling sails, Henry Blair, of Maryland, interested in 
labor saving, patented two corn harvesters in 1834 and in 
1836. Norbert Rillieux, a man of color in Louisiana, 
patented an evaporating pan by which the refining of sugar 

s C. G. Woodson, Education of the Negro Prior to 1861, Ch. IX. 

The Negro In Our History 

Economic Slavery 111 

was revolutionized. There is much evidence that some 
of the inventions brought out by white persons in the South 
prior to the Civil War were devices invented by Negroes. 
The slave as such, according to an opinion of Jeremiah S. 
Black, attorney-general of the United States in 1858, could 
not be granted a patent, for the reason that the slave could 
neither contract with the government nor assign his inven 
tion to his master. Confronting this problem, when Ben 
jamin T. Montgomery, a slave of Jefferson Davis, was on 
this ground denied a patent on an invention, the President 
of the Confederate States secured the enactment of the law 
providing for patenting inventions of slaves. 9 

In spite of these notable exceptions under this economic 
system, however, the Negro race became an element with 
which the whites would not deal as man with man. The 
whites were by law and public opinion re- Negroes 
strained from accepting Negroes as their so- socially 
cial equals, and miscegenation of Negro men 
and white women was penalized as a high crime, although 
there were always a few instances of such association. 
Abdy, who toured the country from 1833 to 1834, doubted 
that such laws were enforced. "A Negro man," said he, 
"was hanged not long ago for this crime at New Orleans. 
The partner of his guilt his master s daughter endeav 
ored to save his life, by avowing that she alone was to 
blame. She died shortly after his execution." 

With the white man and the Negro woman, however, the 
situation was different. A sister of President Madison once 
said to the Reverend George Bourne, then a Presbyterian 

9 This law was : 

And be it further enacted, That in case the original inventor or 
discoverer of the art, machine or improvement for which a patent 
is solicited is a slave, the master of such slave may take oath that 
the said slave was the original ; and on complying with the requisites 
of the law shall receive a patent for said discovery or invention, and 
have all the rights to which a patentee is entitled by law. 

112 The Negro In Our History 

minister in Virginia: "We Southern ladies are compli 
mented with the name of wives; but we are only the mis- 
A weakness tresses of seraglios. 10 But the masters of 
of the the female slaves were not the only persons 

of such loose morals. Many women of color 
were prostituted also to the purposes of young white men 
and overseers. Goodell reports a well-authenticated ac 
count of a respectable l Christian lady at the South, who 
kept a handsome mulatto female for the use of her genteel 
son, as a method of deterring him, as she said, i from indis 
criminate and vulgar indulgences." Harriet Martineau 
discovered a young white man who on visiting a southern 
lady became insanely enamored of her intelligent quadroon 
maid. He sought to purchase her, but the owner refused to 
sell the slave because of her unusual worth. The young 
man persisted in trying to effect this purchase and finally 
informed her owner that he could not live without this at 
tractive slave. Thereupon the white lady sold the woman 
of color to satisfy the lust of her friend. 

Against the hardships of the system numerous slaves re 
belled. Most of them did nothing to injure their masters, 
so thoroughly had they become intimidated after Nat Tur- 
The runaway ner s fate, but they endeavored to make their 
slave. escape into the woods, too often only to be 

brought back after a few weeks adventure. The newspa 
pers quickly proclaimed the news of a runaway, offering 
in its advertisements some attractive reward. White men 
assisted with firearms, and bloodhounds trained to run down 
fugitives, hunted them like game even in the North. That 
section, struck by the inhuman methods to recapture slaves, 
passed personal liberty laws to prevent the return of the 
Negroes apprehended, as many of these were kidnapped 

10 The Journal of Negro History, Vol. ITT, p. 350. 

Economic Slavery 


free persons taken under pretext of being runaways. 11 
These laws, however, were nullified by the decisions of the 
federal courts and the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850, which 
undertook to impress into the service of slave-hunting men 
who were conscientiously opposed to the institution. The 
North was then the scene of the most disgraceful deeds, 


which aroused the consciences of the people and swelled the 
ranks of the abolition minority which at one time seemed 
to decline to meet premature death. 

The efforts of the slaves to escape from bondage, how 
ever, were unusually successful in the Appalachian moun 
tains, where there had been retained a healthy sentiment 
against slavery. The mountaineers of North Fugitives. 
Carolina, Kentucky and Tennessee organized antislavery 

11 These 

Laws are collected in Kurd s Law of Freedom and 

114 The Negro In Our History 

societies during the first quarter of the nineteenth century. 
When that movement became unpopular they generally sup 
ported the cause of colonization, which served as the best 
solution of the immediate problem of the race; for the 
frontiersmen were not particularly attached to the Negro 
race but felt that the institution of slavery was an economic 
evil of which the country should rid itself by a system of 
gradual emancipation as soon as possible. When, however, 
the conditions of the Negroes in the South became so in 
tolerable that it was necessary to flee for larger liberty in 
the Northern States, they found it easy to make their way 
through this region where the farmers were not attached 
to the institution. It was of some help, too, that they could 
easily hide in the mountains and in the limestone regions 
which furnished comfortable caves. The promoters of the 
Underground Railroad, therefore, offered them a way of 
escape by extending their system southward through the 
The mountains of these States so as to connect with 

Underground the fugitives escaping thither. These lines led 
Railroad. through Kentucky into Ohio, Indiana and Illi 

nois, and connected with the Great Lakes, over which the 
fugitives passed into Canada, under the guidance of persons 
like the heroic Josiah Henson, Harriett Tubman, and John 
Brown. 12 

Slaves in urban communities enjoyed more privileges. 
Employed in the trades and domestic service affording close 
contact with their masters, they were economically better 
Town slaves, off than the free Negroes whom they often 
doomed to poverty by crowding them out of the various 
pursuits of labor. There was scarcely any industry in 
which slaves did not engage, and in most cases to the 
exclusion or at the expense of the poor whites as well as of 
the free blacks. Some contractors owned their workmen 

12 W. H. Siebert, Underground Railroad, p. 166. 

Economic Slavery 


just as masters owned the Negroes on their plantations. 
Master mechanics less favorably circumstanced hired 
slaves. In a few cases slaves were employed under the di 
rection of a slave master mechanic who took contracts, 
managed the business, and reported to the master at cer 
tain periods. It was soon learned, however, that a slave 
as such easily competed with free Negroes and whites. It 
was, therefore, necessary 
for the masters to grant 
such bondmen the larger 
freedom of profit-sharing 
or of hiring themselves to 
stimulate them to greater 
endeavor. This custom 
proved prejudicial to white 
mechanics, and in several 
States laws were passed to 
prevent the hiring of slaves 
to themselves. But this 
custom continued in spite 
of strenuous efforts to the 
contrary, as the enforce 
ment of it would have ma 
terially restricted the use 
of slaves. Many slaves 
thus employed were cheated 
in the end by dishonest contractors, but others more fortu 
nately situated contrived thereby to purchase their own 
freedom and that of their families. To do this many 
Negroes worked at night after finishing their tasks by 
day, but this privilege served as another reason for legis 
lation against this custom, as it would lead to an increase 
in the number of free Negroes who might promote servile 

In the city, too, it was possible for the Negroes to main- 


116 The Negro In Our History 

tain among themselves certain social distinctions based 
upon their advantages of contact with the whites and the 
amount of culture they had taken over. Those employed 
Social in the higher pursuits of labor and as domestic 

distinctions, servants to the rich whites were enabled by 
the working-over of cast-off clothes and imitating their 
masters language and airs, to lord it over the crude slaves 
of the fields. In culture the less fortunate Negroes were 
further separated from these urban free blacks than the 
latter were from the whites. In their social affairs they 
sometimes had much liberty and apparently experienced 
much joy. They so impressed travelers with their content 
ment in this situation that some concluded that the Negroes 
had no serious objection to their enslavement. 

Slavery as an economic system, however, required more 
restriction in religious matters, especially after the South 
ampton insurrection. Northern Negroes undertook to ex 
tend the work of their independent connections into the 
Eestrictions South, as in the case of Charleston, South 
on religious Carolina, to which the African Methodists, 
after their withdrawal from the whites, sum 
moned Negroes to be ordained to serve in that city. This 
freedom of action, however, was too much for the South, and 
the independent church movement there was stopped. 
Meetings were prohibited and the bishop, his exhorters, and 
immediate followers were ordered to be imprisoned if they 
did not depart from the State, while others were fined or 
given a number of lashes. As Negroes were thereafter 
forced to accept what accommodations were given them in 
the white churches, they gradually yielded room to the in 
creasing membership of the whites until the blacks were 
forced to the galleries or compelled to hold special services 
following those of the whites. A refusal of Negroes to give 
up to the whites prominent seats long occupied by them in 
a church in Charleston, South Carolina, led to their ejection 

Economic Slavery 117 

by a group of white youths. When criticized for this these 
young members behaved so unbecomingly that nine of them 
had to be expelled; but to show their attachment to the 
southern policy one hundred and fifty others left with 

Unsuccessful efforts were then made to establish separate 
churches for the slaves, like the Calvary Church in Charles 
ton, and the African Baptist Church in Richmond. For 
feigned reasons the legal endorsement for the Negro 
latter was not given until 1855, and then churches, 
on the condition that a white minister be employed. In 
the churches in the cities in the border States, however, 
there was more religious freedom among the slaves. There 
was a Baptist Church in Lexington, Kentucky, in 1830. 
George Bentley, a Negro preacher of polemic distinction, 
was preaching to the most enlightened whites as well as 
blacks in Giles County, Tennessee, in 1859; and Henry 
Evans, a shoemaker and licensed Methodist minister, 
preached with such success for the conversion of the sinful 
in Fayetteville, North Carolina, that from his efforts there 
was organized a church with a membership drawn from 
both races. The white members became so numerous that 
they crowded out the Negroes. In the large cities there was 
still more religious freedom. Washington Negroes had 
several churches early in the nineteenth century, and Balti 
more had ten churches for slave and free Negroes in 

The South, however, had succeeded in hedging in the 
Negro so that he might forever afterward do the will of 
his master, but this seemingly sane method of developing 
the South was what resulted in its undoing. si avery the 
Since migration of slaveholders promoted a undoing of 
segregation of planters of the same class, mov- } * 

ing under similar conditions and to the same section, it made 
reform almost an impossibility, and in preventing the im- 

118 The Negro In Our History 

migration of white laborers into the slave States the system 
became so strongly intrenched that it had to be attacked 
from without. In the first place, in the effort to exploit 
black men it transformed white men into bloodthirsty be 
ings. The system, moreover, promoted the formation of 
wasteful habits. It prevented the growth of towns and cities 
and shut out manufacturing, leaving the South dependent 
on the North or European nations for its manufactures. 
While the North was receiving an influx of free laborers the 
South was increasing unnecessarily its slave labor supply, 
indulging in unwise investments, and overstocking the mar 
kets with southern staple crops. In making labor undigni 
fied, moreover, it reduced the poor whites to poverty, caused 
a scarcity of money, cheapened land, and confined the South 
to one-crop farming at the expense of its undeveloped 

The economic interests of the two sections, therefore, 
began to differ widely during the thirties. When Missouri 
asked for admission to the Union, the struggle which ensued 
Differing emphasized these differences. Prior to this 

interests. period slavery had well established itself in 

that territory. When everything had been arranged and 
Congress was about to pass the bill providing for its ad 
mission, James Talmadge, a representative from New York, 
upset things by offering an amendment providing that slav 
ery should not be allowed in that territory. This led to a 
fiery debate participated in by the stalwart defenders of the 
proslavery section of the country and by the Congressmen 
of the North, who although at that time unprepared to ad 
vocate a general abolition of slavery, were convinced that 
it was an evil and desired to prohibit its expansion. It was 
pointed out by the antislavery element that some of the 
State of Missouri lies farther north than the mouth of the 
Ohio River, above which slavery was prohibited by the 

Economic Slavery 119 

Ordinance of 1787 organizing the Northwest Territory. 13 
The main question was whether or not Congress had any 
right to limit a State coming into the Union. Decidedly it 
had, but it was necessary to argue the question. It was 
pointed out that in the admission of the State of Louisiana 
Congress imposed certain conditions requiring that the 
State should use the English language as its official tongue, 
should guarantee the writ of habeas corpus and trial by 
jury, and incorporate into its organic laws the fundamental 
principles of civil and religious liberty. They could have 
pointed out, too, that Ohio was required to comply with a 
number of requirements, among which was the use of certain 
of its lands in the Western Reserve and in the southeast. 14 

The antislavery group, moreover, contended that inas 
much as Congress is required by the Constitution to guar 
antee to each State a republican form of government 
it was necessary to prohibit slavery, which Binding 
was incompatible with that form of govern- a state - 
ment. The proslavery party supported their cause on the 
ground that to impose a restriction on a State would place 
it on a basis of inequality rather than that of equality 
with other States. The privileges enjoyed by one State 
should be enjoyed by all. If one had the right to hold 
slaves, all should enjoy the same privilege as they had when 
all were admitted to the Union. It was contended, more 
over, that powers not delegated to the United States Gov- 

13 There are discussions of the constitutional question growing out 
of slavery in Herman von Hoist s The Constitutional and Political 
History of the United States of America, in John W. Burgess s 
Middle Period and his Civil War and Reconstruction, and in James 
Ford Rhodes History of the United States, Chs. VI and VII. Burgess 
and Rhodes, however, are generally biased. 

14 Restrictions were also imposed later on California when it was 
provided that the duties on goods imported there should have to be 
fixed according to terms set forth in the amendment to the regular 
navy act. 

120 The Negro In Our History 

eminent nor prohibited to the States were reserved to the 
States. The question as to whether a State should hold 
slaves, therefore, was reserved to that commonwealth and 
Congress had no right to interfere therewith. 

It was asserted also, as was admitted thereafter, that the 
restriction against slavery in the Ordinance of 1787 was 
not binding on those States of the territory that had been 
The Ordinance admitted to the Union, and that they could in- 
of 1787. troduce slavery when they desired. 15 The 

proslavery leaders believed that the institution of slavery 
would be beneficial to the country rather than an evil, in that 
it would provide for an extension of the system, reducing 
the number held by each person and, therefore, bringing the 
slave into more direct and helpful contact with the master. 
The agitation was quieted for the time being, after the 
compromise permitting Missouri to come into the Union as 
a slave State but prohibiting the institution south of parallel 
thirty-six, thirty constituting the southern limit of Missouri. 

Another important question came forward in the Missouri 
debate when the question had been all but settled, that is, 
when the State had framed a constitution in keeping with 
Tne the instructions given in the enabling act, but 

citizenship had incorporated into this document a clause 
egroes. providing for the exclusion of free Negroes 
from that commonwealth. This provision was seriously 
attacked by the friends of justice, arguing that inasmuch as 
these Negroes were citizens of the United States, no State 
had a right to restrict their privileges, as such action would 
conflict with the Constitution of the United States, which 
guarantees to the citizens of each commonwealth all the 
privileges and immunities of citizens in every other com 
monwealth. This drove home the real truth which the 

T J. P. Dunn, Indiana; A Redemption from Slavery, pp. 218-260; 
N. D. Harris, The History of Negro Servitude in Illinois, Chs. Ill, 
IV and V; and B. A. Hinsdale, Old Northwest, pp. 351-358. 

Economic Slavery 121 

country had not before realized, that there was such a thing 
as citizenship of the United States in contradistinction to 
citizenship in a State, and that the citizenship of the United 
States is more than citizenship of a State. When a citizen, 
therefore, immigrated into and settled in another State, he 
should not, according to the Constitution, lose the right to 
be treated as a citizen of that commonwealth. When this 
involved the rights of the Negro it was certainly startling 
to the representatives of the South ; and Missouri, for that 
reason, if for no other, was less inclined than ever to 
change that provision of its Constitution. The matter was 
settled by a second compromise, to counteract the effect this 
clause might have, by providing that nothing therein con 
tained should be so construed as to give the assent of Con 
gress to any provision in the Constitution of Missouri which 
contravened that clause in the Constitution of the United 
States which declares that the citizens of each State shall 
be entitled to all of the privileges and immunities of citizens 
in the several States. 

Slavery again showed its far-reaching effects. Dur 
ing the first three decades of the nineteenth century, the 
South, in the natural order of things, became a section 
dependent solely on its peculiar institution, a Slavery and 
district devoted entirely to agriculture and the tariff, 
almost solidly organized in defending such interests. For 
this reason the South developed into a mere plantation. 
The North, on the other hand, in view of the shipping 
industry, its commerce, and the manufacturing, which of 
necessity grew during the war of 1812 and decidedly 
expanded thereafter, developed a number of business and 
industrial centers desirous of protecting their industries 
by imposing certain duties on goods imported from 
Europe. This caused a shift in the positions of the lead 
ers of these two sections. Whereas, in 1816, John C. 
Calhoun was an advocate of a protective tariff and Daniel 

122 The Negro In Our History 

Webster was a free trader, in 1832 Webster was in favor 
of import duties and Calhoun had constructed a policy of 
free trade. With the support of the West, desiring a pro 
tective duty on its hemp and the like, the manufacturing 
districts were able to secure the enactment of tariff-for- 
protection measures in 1824, 1828 and 1832. 16 

Against the protective tariff the commonwealths of the 
South began to argue that it was discriminatory and there 
fore unconstitutional, in that it imposed a tax upon one 
Opposition to section for the benefit of the other. Congress, 
the tariff. as the South saw it, had no right to legislate 

in behalf of one section at the expense of the other. So bit 
ter did the South become because of this seeming imposition 
that in 1832 South Carolina undertook to nullify the tariff 
law of 1832, believing very much as Kentucky and Virginia 
had in 1798, that a State had a right to obey or to nullify 
a law passed by Congress, if, in its judgment, it found out 
that that law was prejudicial to the interests of the State 

It was made clear, moreover, that South Carolina was 
of the opinion that this country was not a Union but still 
a Confederation loosely held together very much as the 
A union or a States were under the Articles of Confedera- 
confederacy? t i on ^ State, therefore, as long as it chose 
to be bound by the terms of the Constitution could continue 
to do so, but if at any time it felt that the union with the 
other States was undesirable, it could of itself or in con 
nection with a number of States constituting a majority 
call a convention representing the same power by which the 
Constitution was ratified and declare the severance of the 
ties that bound them to the Union. 

It was necessary, therefore, for the Union to take high 
ground for its own self-preservation. Although Andrew 

16 See Calhoun s speech in the Appendix. 

Economic Slavery 123 

Jackson, then President of the United States, did not hold 
any brief for the tariif himself, he could not countenance 
the act of nullification. He, therefore, threatened to use 
force should South Carolina refuse to obey the laws of Con 
gress. This matter, like others threatening the foundation 
of the Union, was settled by a compromise brought for 
ward by Henry Clay to the effect that the duties would 
remain as they were under the law of 1832, but by a gradual 
process would be diminished until they reached the rates 
acceptable to South Carolina. 

Slavery brought out also another economic question in 
connection with internal improvements. It was difficult for 
a slaveholding section to expand as rapidly as the manu 
facturing and commercial parts of the country. In this all 
but phenomenal growth of the United States internal 
there was an urgent need for canals and roads improvements, 
to tap the resources of the interior. As the South in its 
slow development did not feel this need and thought that it 
would not generally profit by these improvements, it usually 
opposed them on the grounds that the United States 
Government had no authority to make such improvements 
and the States had not the required funds. This opposition 
resulted from the observation that these improvements were 
unifying influences which strengthened the Union at the 
expense of the South, which hoped to hold the axe of 
secession over the heads of the Unionists. 



WHILE the fate of the slaves in the South was being 
determined, there was also a considerable number of free 
persons of color whose status was ever changing. Few 
people now realize the extent to which the free Negro 
The status of n g ure( l in the population of this country prior 
the free to the Civil War. 1 Before slavery was re- 

egro duced from a patriarchial establishment to the 

mere business of exploiting men, a considerable number of 
Negroes had secured their freedom, and the fruits of the 
American Revolution, effective long thereafter in ameliorat 
ing their condition, gave an impetus to manumission. In 
some colonies Negroes were indentured servants before 
they were slaves, and became free upon the expiration of 
their term of service. The result was that there were in this 
country in 1790 as many as 59,557 free people of color, 
35,000 of whom were living in the South. During the two 
decades from 1790 to 1810, the rate of increase of free 
Negroes exceeded that of the slaves, and the proportion of 
free Negroes in the black population increased accordingly 
from 7.9 per cent in 1790 to 13.5 per cent in 1810. After 

iJohn H. Russell, The Free Negro in Virginia, passim; E. R. 
Turner, The Negro in Pennsylvania; F. U. Quillin, The Color Line vn 
Ohio, passim; C. T. Hickok/TVie Negro in Ohio, passim; C. G. Wood- 
son, A Century of Negro Migration, pp. 1-100; the Journal of Negro 
History, I, 1-68, 99-100, 203-242, 302-317, 361-376; II, 51-78, 164-185; 
III, 90-91, 196-197, 360-367, 435-441, and Negro Population in the 
United States, 1190 to 1915. 


The Free Negro 125 

this date the tendency was in the other direction because of 
the reaction against the Negro, bringing about a restriction 
on manumissions. 

Between 1810 and 1840 the Negro population almost 
doubled, but the proportion of the free Negroes remained 
about the same. Because of further restriction on manu 
mission and the more secure foundation of Slow increase, 
economic slavery with rigid regulations to prevent the 
fugitives from escaping, this proportion of free Negroes in 
the black population decreased to 11.9 per cent by 1850 and 
to 18 per cent by 1860. While the Negro population as a 
whole doubled its percentage of increase, then, that of the 
free blacks declined. It became smaller in parts of the 
North and declined to one-fourth of the rate of increase 
between 1800 to 1810. In 1860 the rate of increase was 
about one per cent a year. It is worthy of note, however, 
that there were 434,455 free Negroes in the United States 
in 1850 and 488,070 in 1860. At this latter date 83,942 
of these were in Maryland, 58,042 in Virginia, 30,463 in 
North Carolina, 18,467 in Louisiana, 11,131 in the District 
of Columbia, 10,638 in Kentucky; in short, 250,787 in the 
whole South. 

This increase of free Negroes was largely a natural 
growth. There had been, of course, some additions by pur 
chases of freedom and the acquisition of new territory. 
They did not immigrate into this country, increase a 
for only 7,011 free Negroes enumerated in 
1860 were born abroad. Some idea as to the 
extent other factors figured in this may be obtained from 
the fact that 1,467 Negroes were manumitted in 1859 and 
1,011 became fugitives. In 1859 there were 3,000 manu 
missions and 803 fugitives. The census of 1860 reports 
that probably 20,000 manumissions were made during the 
decade between 1850 and 1860. 

126 The Negro In Our History 

Negro Population, 1790 to 1860 

Free Decennial Increase 




Per cent 








Free Slave 

1860 4 











1850. ... 3 











1840 2 










1830.. . 2 










1820. . 

. 1 











1810. . 

. 1 











1800. . 

. 1 











1790. . 

, 1 



7. .9 



The statistics of the Negro population between 1790 and 
1915 suggest as an explanation for this decrease that the 
free people of color were much older and therefore subject 
Sex to a higher mortality rate; that they were 

distribution. j ess normally distributed by sex and therefore 
probably characterized by a marital condition less favor 
able to rapid natural increase. Among the free Negroes at 
each of the five censuses, from 1820 to 1860, there were 
fewer males than females, whereas the distribution as to sex 
among the slaves remained about equally divided between 
"the two. While this does not altogether account for the 
disparity, it doubtless had something to do with the situ 
ation, for the Negroes manumitted were, as a majority, 
men, and those who contrived to escape were largely of the 
same sex. Furthermore, masters controlled the slave supply 
so as to add what number they needed from whichever 
sex seemed deficient. 

The customs and regulations restraining the slaves did 
not generally apply to the free people of color even when 
so provided by law. Some of them were closely connected 
with their masters, who ^ave ^p^ mnrft oor\ ^deration than 
The status of that shown bv many others wfo sold their 
free Negroes. own flesh and blood. In spite of the law to 
the contrary, a few such benevolent masters maintained 
schools for the education of their mulatto children. When 
that became unpopular they were privately instructed or 
sent to the North for education. Charleston, South Caro- 

The Free Negro 127 

Una, affords a good example of the interest manifested in 
the free people of color by the attitude of citizens, who 
winked at the efforts of the free blacks to educate their 
children in well-organized schools in defiance of the law. 
In the State of Louisiana, where many of these mixed 
breeds were found, their fathers sometimes sent them to 
Paris to avail themselves of the advantages of the best 
education of that time. 

These free Negroes were not all on the same plane. In 
the course of time they experienced a development of social 
distinction which largely resembled that of the whites. 
There were treedmenlu possession 6! a considerable amounjE 
o^ jproperty, others who formed a lower class of mechanics 
and artisans, and finally those^ My* 11 ? with difficulty above 
pecuniary embarrassment. Among those in the large cities 
social lines were as strongly drawn as between the whites 
and the blacks, and the antipathy resulting therefrom was 
hardly less. 

The well-to-do free Negroes were not merely persons with * 
sufficient property to form an attachment to the com 
munity. Many of them owned slaves, who cultivated their 
large estates. Of 360 persons of color in progressive 
Charleston, 130 of them were, in 1860, assessed freedmen. 
with taxes on 390 slaves. In some of these cases, as in that 
of Marie Louise Bitaud, a free woman of color in New Or 
leans, in 1832, these slaves were purchased for personal 
reasons or benevolent purposes, often to make their lot 
much easier. They were sometimes sold by sympathetic 
white persons to Negroes for a nominal sum on the condition 
that they be kindly treated. 

Some of these instances are enlightening. A colored man 
in 1818 bought a sailmaker in Charleston. Richard Rich 
ardson sold a slave woman and child for $800 to Alexander 
Hunter, guardian of the Negro freeman Louis Mirault of 
Savannah. Anthony Ordingsell, a free man of color, sold 

128 The Negro In Our History 

a slave woman in the same city in 1833. A Charleston Negro 
who purchased his wife for $700 sold her at a profit of 
$50 because she would not behave herself. To check this, 
laws restricting manumission, as in Virginia in 1806, were 
enacted to limit this benevolence of white men by imposing 
difficult conditions. Thereafter, these freedmen were to be 
sent out of the State unless their former master agreed to 
support them. 

Some other Negroes of less distinction accomplished 
much to convince the world of the native ability of the 
Negroes to extricate themselves from peculiar situations and 
Undistin- to ma ^ e progress in spite of opposition, 

guishedfree Samuel Martin, a benevolent slaveholder of 
Negroes. color residing at Port Gibson, Mississippi, pur 

chased his own freedom in 1829, and thereafter purchased 
two mulatto women with their four children, brought them 
to Cincinnati in 1844, and emancipated them. Another 
Negro named Creighton, living in Charleston, South Caro 
lina, accumulated considerable wealth which he finally de 
cided to devote to the colonization of the Negroes in Liberia. 
He disposed of his property, offering his slaves the alter 
native of being liberated on the condition of accompanying 
him to Africa or of being sold as property. Only one of his 
slaves accepted the offer, but he closed up his business in 
Charleston, purchased for the enterprise a schooner of his 
own, and set sail for Liberia in 1821. 

Among the prosperous free Negroes in the South may 
be mentioned Jehu Jones, the proprietor of one of the most 
popular hotels in Charleston and owner of forty thousand 
Wealthy dollars worth of property. There lived 

persons of Thorny Lafon in New Orleans, where he ac 
cumulated real estate to the amount of almost 
half a million dollars, and in the same city a woman of 
color owning a tavern and several slaves. A Negro in 
St. Paul s Parish, South Carolina, was said to have two hun- 

The Free Negro 129 

dred slaves, and a white wife and son-in-law, in 1857. In 
1833 Solomon Humphries, a free Negro well known by men 
of all classes in Macon, Georgia, kept a grocery store there 
and had more credit than any other merchant in the town. 
He had accumulated about twenty thousand dollars worth 
of property, including a number of slaves. Cyprian Ricard 
bought an estate in Iberville Parish, with ninety-one slaves, 
for about $225,000. Marie Metoyer, of Natchitoches Parish, 
possessed fifty slaves and an estate of more than 2,000 
acres. Charles Rogues of the same community left in 1848 
forty-seven slaves. Martin Donato, of St. Landry, died in 
1848, leaving a Negro wife and children possessed of 4,500 
arpents of land, eighty-nine slaves and personal property 
worth $46,000. 

These Negroes, however, were exceptions to the rule. 
Most well-to-do free Negroes in urban communities be 
longed to the artisan class, and there were more of them 
than one would think. In southern cities most Prosperous 
of the work in the mechanic arts was done by mechanics, 
the slaves, as there was less discrimination in this field in 
the South than in the North. Contrasting the favorable 
conditions of southern Negroes with that of those in the 
North, a proslavery man referred to Charleston, South 
Carolina, as furnishing a good example of a center of un 
usual activity and rapid strides of thrifty free Negroes. 
Enjoying these unusual advantages, the Negroes of Charles 
ton were early in the nineteenth century ranked by some as 
economically and intellectually superior to any other group 
of such persons in the United States. A large portion of the 
leading mechanics, fashionable tailors, shoe manufacturers, 
and mantua-makers were free Negroes, who had "a con 
sideration in the community far more than that enjoyed by 
any of the colored population in the northern cities. 

What then was the situation in the North ? The fugitive 
slave found it difficult. Most Negroes who became free as 

130 The Negro In Our History 

a result of manumission had been dependents so long that 
they lost their initiative. When thrown upon their own 
resources in the North where they had to make opportuni 
ties, they failed. In increasing the number of those seeking 
Hardships in economic opportunities in the North, more- 
the North. over, they so cheapened the labor as to make 
it difficult for the free Negroes already there to earn a live 
lihood. They were, therefore, branded by the writers of the 
time as the pariahs of society. There was, in fact, as much 
prejudice against the free Negroes in parts of the North as 
in the South. This feeling, however, resulted largely from 
the antipathy engendered by the competition of the Negroes 
with the large number of Germans and Scotch-Irish immi 
grating into this country a generation before the Civil War. 

Some few Negroes facing these conditions returned 
South and reenslaved themselves rather than starve in the 
North. A larger number in the South, however, were en- 
The return to slaved against their wills for such petty of- 
the South. fenses as theft and the like, which almost any 
poverty-stricken man would be liable to commit. They 
were ordinarily arrested as suspected fugitives, or for va 
grancy and illegal residence, and finally sold for jail fees. 
As Negroes in these cases were not allowed to testify in their 
own behalf, the official arresting a free Negro generally 
preferred against him whatever charge best suited his con 
venience and disposed of the Negro accordingly. Eighty- 
nine were sold in Maryland under the act of 1858 justify 
ing such reenslavement. Much of this repression was in 
stituted for intimidation to keep the free Negroes down 
that they might never join with slaves in an insurrec 

How did the situation of the free Negro compare with 
that of the white man? In the first place, the freedman 
Restrictions, was not a citizen in any Southern State after 
1834 and was degraded from that status in certain States in 

The Free Negro 131 

the North. In most States free persons of color had with 
some limitations the right to own and alienate property, even 
to own and sell Negro slaves. Early statutes and customs, 
however, prohibited them from owning whites as servants, 
and during the intense slavery agitation of the thirties 
this right of holding Negroes as slaves was gradually re 
stricted to whites because of the benevolent use made of it 
by certain Negroes, who purchased more than their wives 
and children. For fear of improper uses, too, free Negroes 
in the South were not allowed to own such property as 
firearms, dogs, firelocks, poisonous drugs and intoxicants. 
As they were prohibited from serving in the State militia, 
they would have no need for firearms. The Negro, more 
over, had a weak title to property in himself. If the 
Negro s right to be free were questioned, the burden of 
proof lay on him. 

In some cases, however, the free Negroes had a little 
chance in the courts. The freedmen had the remedy of 
habeas corpus. They could bring suit against persons doing 
them injury, and in the case of seeming injus- Some 
tice in a lower court they could appeal to privileges, 
a higher. When charged with crime the free Negro had the 
right to trial by jury and could, after indictment, give 
bond for his liberty. The right of jury trial was after Nat 
Turner s insurrection in 1831 restricted in several southern 
States to cases punishable by death. It must be remem 
bered, however, that the Negro could not expect a fair trial ; 
for, consistent with the unwritten primitive law of the 
white man in dealing with the blacks, judgment preceded 
proof. In the case of ordinary misdemeanors the lot of the 
free Negroes was no better than that of the slave. Corporal 
punishment in these cases was administered to the Negroes 
without stint, whereas a white man guilty of the same 
offense would be requested to pay a fine. In most cases of 
felony the punishment for a white man and a free Negro 

132 The Negro In Our History 

was the same in the beginning, but the reaction brought 
on certain distinctions. 

At times the free Negroes could go and come to suit them 
selves. During the ardent slavery agitation, however, it was 
necessary for them to exhibit their free papers when ques 
tioned. They were later restrained from moving from one 
Egress and State to another or even from one county to 
regress. another without securing a permit. In some 

southern States, nearer the middle of the nineteenth cen 
tury, it was unlawful for a free Negro to return to the State 
after leaving, as he might be spoiled by contact or educa 

Although forcing the free Negroes to a low social status, 
the local government did not exempt them from its bur 
dens. In Virginia, free Negroes were required to pay a poll 
tax of $1.50 in 1813 and $2.50 in 1815. In 1814, 5,547 free 
Negroes in that State paid $8,322 in taxes, and in 1863 they 
paid $13,065.22 in poll taxes. The Negroes in Baltimore 
paid $500 in school taxes in 1860, although their children 
could not attend the city schools. Most States taxed the 
free Negroes inconsistently in the same way. 

Socially, the Negro, whether slave or free under the eco 
nomic regime, was an outcast. Prejudice based on color 
rather than on condition made him an object of opprobrium 
The Negro in the nineteenth century, in contradistinction 
an outcast. to hj s condition a hundred years earlier. In 
the seventeenth century there followed miscegenation of the 
races. In the eighteenth century free Negroes still ex 
perienced some interbreeding and moved with the whites 
socially in certain parts. In the nineteenth century all social 
relations between the whites and the free Negroes be 
came about the same as those of the former with the 

No laws prevented the intermarriage of the free Negroes 

The Free Negro 133 

and Indians. Squaws accepted Negroes for husbands, and 
Indian men commonly had black wives. Extensive mis 
cegenation of these stocks was experienced in interbreeding 
most States in the South. As these two races with the 
were in common undesirables among the n ans * 
whites, the one early manifested sympathy for the other, 
as was evidenced by the fact that in the massacre of 1622 
in Virginia not an African was killed. In the raids of 
the Indians on the settlers of Louisiana, Negroes often acted 
in concert with them. Efforts had to be made to separate 
the Negroes from the Indians, when the former eagerly re 
sorted to their reservations as places of refuge. In some 
cases the Negroes on these estates survived the Indians, 
who became extinct. 

Out of these unions came a class of Negroes commonly 
known as the mustees, or mestizos, and it became necessary 
for laws and legal documents citing persons of color to 
give in detail all of these various designations. Mustees and 
No distinction was later made between them mestizos, 
and other persons of color, however, and they passed as a 
part of the free Negro population. Evidences of their 
presence in Virginia appeared at an early date. In 1734 
John Dingie, an Indian of King William County, married 
Anne Littlepage, a mulatto daughter of the wealthy Ed 
mund Littlepage. He himself was occupied as a sailor, and 
his wife, a free woman, was the heir of considerable wealth. 

Free Negroes mingled more with the slaves, however, 
than with any other class. This was not the condition in 
the beginning, but in the course of time, when the free 
Negroes dwindled in number and their chances R e i at i 0ns O f 
for education and the accumulation of wealth free Negroes 
grew less, the social distinctions between them and slaves - 
and the slaves diminished and they associated with and 
married among them. This became common in the nine- 

134 The Negro In Our History 

teenth century. In fact, when the question of employment 
became serious, it was often advantageous for a free Negro 
to marry a slave wife. This attachment too often prevented 
a free Negro from being expelled from the State by the 
hostile laws when he had this all but permanent connection 
with the community. A master would not force him to 
leave for fear that he might induce his family to escape. 
Some slaves disliked free Negroes because conditions had 
made the former apparently the inferiors of the latter. 

The accomplishment of this task of reducing the free 
people of color almost to the status of the slaves, however, 
was not easy. In the first place, so many persons of color 
Exceptions to had risen to positions of usefulness among 
the rule. progressive people and had formed connec 

tions with them that an abrupt separation was both inex 
pedient and undesirable. Exceptions to the hard and fast 
rules of caste were often made to relieve the people of color. 
The miscegenation of the races in the South and especially 
in large cities like Charleston and New Orleans, moreover, 
had gone to the extent that from these centers eventually 
went, as they do now, a large number of quadroons and 
octoroons, who elsewhere crossed over to the white race. 
As the status of the Negroes remained fixed, however, while 
that of the poor whites changed, the close relations for 
merly existing between these classes gradually ceased. 

The free Negro was in many respects a disturbing factor 
in the economic system. White laborers did not care to 
compete with them. The free Negro usually won in the 
A disturbing contest, for the reason that his standard of liv- 
factor. j n g was i ow er and he could work for less. 

Moreover, being almost defenseless before a hostile public, 
he could be more easily cheated and was, therefore, to be 
preferred. According to testimony, however, they were 
of economic worth. Yet others called them idlers, criminals, 
vicious vagabonds, a vile excrescence and the like. These 

The Free Negro 


opinions may not be taken seriously when there are so many 
others to the contrary. 

In the North the Negroes were likewise socially and, in ad 
dition to this, economically proscribed. Yet Successful 
they usually succeeded in permanently estab- Negroes, 
lishing themselves wherever they had an opportunity. 2 




NEW YORK AFRICAX FREE SCHOOL, No. 2, built a century a^o 

Joseph C. Cassey and William Platt became enterprising- 
lumber merchants in Western New York ; Henry Topp came 
forward as a leading merchant tailor in Albany, and Henry 
Scott of New York City founded and promoted for a num- 

2 For other instances of free Negroes making economic progress, see 
William Wells Brown s The Black Man, M. R. DeLany s The Con 
dition of the Colored People of the United States, Alexander Mott 8 
Biographical Sketches, W. J. Simmons s Men of Mark, C. G. Wood- 
son s A Century of Negro Migration, and The. .Journal of Negro 
History,, under the caption Undistinguished Xcgroes, 

136 The Negro In Our History 

her of years one of the most successful pickling establish 
ments in that metropolis, while along with him arose 
Thomas Downing, a caterer, and Edward V. Clark, a pros 
perous jeweler. Other Negroes were building churches, es 
tablishing schools, and editing newspapers promoting the 
interests of the people of color. 

In Pennsylvania, where Negroes were found in large 
numbers, more evidences of progress were noted. The Ne 
groes of Philadelphia had taxable property to the amount 
THHiUm^ nf of $"350.000 in 1832 T S359.626 worth in 1837. 
progress. and $400,000 worth in 1847. They had estab 

lished before emancipation more than a score of churches 
with which were connected more than a hundred benevolent 
societies and a number of schools. Five hundred of these 
Negroes were mechanics, and a considerable number ranked 
as business men. Among the latter were James Forten, a 
sail manufacturer, Joseph Casey, a broker, and Stephen 
Smith, a lumber merchant. William Goodrich of York was 
investing in railroad stock. Benjamin Richards of Pitts- 
burg was accumulating wealth in the butchering business, 
and Henry M. Collins of the same city was developing a real 
estate enterprise of considerable proportions. 

The Free Negro 




THE free Negroes, moreover, exhibited not only the power 
to take care of themselves in old communities, but blazed 
the way for progress of the race in new commonwealths and 
in all but forbidden fields. In the Northwest Territory, 
where many free Negroes from the South were colonized, 
their achievements were no less significant. Luke Mulber 
came to Steubenville, Ohio, in 1802, hired himself out to a 
carpenter for ten dollars a month during the summer and 
Instances of went to school in the winter. At the expiration 
success. O f three years he could do rough carpentry 

work and had about mastered the fundamentals of educa 
tion. With this as a foundation he rose to a position of 
usefulness among the people of his town. Becoming a con 
tractor, he hired four journeymen and did such creditable 
work that he was often called upon to do more than he 
could. David Jenkins, of Columbus, Ohio, was then a 
wealthy planter, glazier, and paper hanger. One Hill of 
Chillicothe was its leading tanner and currier. 

In Cincinnati, where, as a group, the Negroes had their 
best opportunity, many made rapid strides forward. By 
1840 the Negroes of this city had acquired $228,000 of real 
estate. One Negro was worth $6,000 ; another, who had pur- 
Achievements chased himself and family for $5,000 a few 
in Cincinnati. years pr j r to 1840, was worth $1,000. An 
other Negro paid $5,000 for himself and family and bought 
a home worth $800 to $1,000. A freedman who was a slave 
until he was twenty-four years of age, then had two lots 


Blazing the Way 


worth $10,000, paid a tax of $40, and had 320 acres of land 
in Mercer County, Ohio. His estate altogether was worth 
about $12,000 or $15,000. A woman who was a slave until 
she was thirty then had property worth $2,000. She had 
also come into potential possession of two houses, on which 
a white lawyer had given her a mortgage to secure the 
payment of $2,000 borrowed from this thrifty woman. An 
other Negro, who was on the auction block in 1832, had 


Negroes in 1842 

spent $2,600 purchasing himself and family and had bought 
two brick houses, valued at $6,000, and 560 acres of land, 
said to be worth $2,500, in Mercer County, Ohio. 

Out of this group in Cincinnati came some very useful 
Negroes, among whom may be mentioned Robert Harlan, 
the horseman; A. V. Thompson, the tailor; J. Presley and 
Thomas Ball, contractors ; and Samuel T. Wil- Statistics, 
cox, the merchant, who was worth $60,000 in 1859. There 
were among them two other successful Negroes, Henry 
Royd and Robert Gordon. Boyd was a Kentucky freedman 

140 The Negro In Our History 

who helped to overcome the prejudice in Cincinnati against 
Negro mechanics by inventing and exploiting a corded bed, 
the demand for which was extensive throughout the Ohio 
and Mississippi Valleys. He had a creditable manufac 
turing business in which he employed twenty-five men. 

Eobert Gordon, the other Negro there, was doubtless a 
more interesting character. He was born the slave of a 
rich yachtsman in Richmond, Virginia. His master placed 
A shrewd him in charge of a coal yard, which he handled 
business man. so faithfully that his owner gave him all of 
the slack resulting from the handling of the coal. This he 
sold to the local manufacturers, accumulating thereby in 
the course of time thousands of dollars. He purchased him 
self in 1846 and after inspecting several Negro settlements 
in the North went into the coal business in Cincinnati. 
Having then about $15,000, Gordon made much morfc 
progress in this coveted enterprise than his competitors de 
sired. They thereupon reduced the price of coal so as to 
make it unprofitable for Gordon to continue in the business. 
He was shrewd enough to fill all of his orders at the white 
coal yards by making his purchases through mulattoes who 
could pass for white. Soon there followed a general freez 
ing on the Ohio River, making it impossible to bring coal 
down the river. Gordon then sold out his supply at ad 
vanced prices, so increasing his wealth that he was later 
in a position to invest extensively in United States bonds 
during the Civil War and afterward in real estate on 
Walnut Hills in Cincinnati. 

This economic progress would have been greater, had it 
not been for race riots in communities in which free Ne 
groes lived. On January 1, 1830, a mob drove eighty Ne 
groes from Portsmouth, Ohio ; 1,200 Negroes left Cincinnati 
Riots. for Canada as a result of the riot of 1829, and 

others lost life and property in the riots of 1836 and 1841. 
The disastrous effects of this unsettled state were further ag- 

Blazing the Way 141 

gravated by the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850. Many fugi 
tives and their relatives residing in the free States moved 
immediately into Canada after the proclamation of this 
measure as the law of the land. Within thirty-six hours 
thereafter forty Negroes left Massachusetts for Canada. The 
Negro population of Columbia, Pennsylvania, decreased 
from 943 to 437. A Negro settlement at Sandy The Fugitive 
Lake in the northwestern part of that State was Slave Law - 
broken up altogether. Every member of a Negro Methodist 
Church, eighty-two in number, including the pastor, fled 
from a town in New York to Canada. The Negro churches 
of Buffalo lost many communicants. One in Rochester lost 
one hundred and twelve, including the pastor, and another 
in Detroit eighty-four. Some Negroes stood their ground 
and gave battle, as in the case of the Christiana tragedy in 
Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, where Edward Gorsuch 
was killed and his son wounded by free Negroes whom 
he wanted to enslave. 

Those Negroes who dared to remain in the free States 
to defy the slave catchers were not thereafter in a frame of 
mind to promote their economic welfare, so great was the 
demand on their time for maintaining their p ersona i 
freedom. In fact, the main concern of many freedom 
leaders among the free Negroes and their 
sympathizers was aiding fugitives to reach free soil. 
William Craft, escaping from Macon, Georgia, with his 
handsome quadroon wife who effected their escape by posing 
as his owner, caused unusual excitement in the North until 
this heroic dash for freedom ended with their flight to 
England. Then followed the arrest of Daniel as a fugitive 
in Buffalo, where the federal commissioner re- Seeking 
manded him to his claimant. Hamlet was fugitives, 
captured by his pursuers in New York City while the 
arrest of Jerry in Syracuse was stirring the whites and 
blacks throughout the North. Shadrach, claimed as a 


The Negro In Our History 

slave in Boston, was imprisoned but almost miraculously 
spirited away to Canada, Thomas Simms, arrested later, 
however, was returned to slavery to please those who feared 
the southern threats of secession if the Fugitive Slave Law 
was not enforced, and to satisfy Boston business men who 

did not care to lose their 
trade with the South. 
Then for a similar reason 
came the return of An 
thony Burns, a Baptist 
clergyman, arrested at the 
instance of Charles F. Sut- 
tle of Virginia, while two 
hundred special policemen 
had to be sworn in to re 
strain citizens who consid 
ered the law an infringe 
ment upon personal liberty. 
The Dred Scot decision, 
denying that the Negroes 
were citizens and making 
slavery national and free 
dom sectional, was the cli- 

ELLEN GRAFT, a fugitive disguised 
as her master 

max of these invasions of 
human rights. 

Thousands of fugitives, 
however, were never apprehended. They were gener 
ally well directed through the free States by the agents 
of the Underground Railroad conducted by Quakers and 
militant abolitionists. This was not any 
well-known route controlled by a well or 
ganized body. It was rather a number of 
Christian people scattered throughout the free States but 
united with their common purpose to promote the escape of 
slaves by clandestine methods in defiance of the mediaeval 




lihiziug the Way 


laws of the United States. There were near the border im 
portant stations which were always furnishing much excite 
ment in the pursuit and capture, as related by William Still, 
in charge at Philadelphia, Levi Coffin, the station master 
at Cincinnati, and William Whipper, the moving spirit at 
Columbia, Pennsylvania. 

Effective work was done in the Northwest Territory. 

Through this section extended 
numerous routes from Ken 
tucky and Tennessee to Canada. 
Josiah Henson and Harriett Tub- 
man used these routes in con 
ducting fugitives to Harriett 
freedom. The ca- Tirtman. 
reer of the latter in this haz 
ardous enterprise was unusually 
romantic. Born a slave in Mary 
land but endowed with too much 
love of freedom not to break the 
chains which held her, she be 
came in the North the most ven 
turesome worker in the employ 
of the Underground Railroad. When her coworkers had 
much fear as to her safety, she dared to go even into the 
very heart of the South. Once she returned to her old home 
in Maryland, where she met her master along the road but 
easily contrived to prevent him from recognizing her. She 
did so much to aid the escape of fugitives and to rescue 
freedmen from slave hunters that the aggrieved owners 
offered for her capture a reward of $40,000. For these 
unusual exploits she became known as the Moses" of her 

After the first excitement caused by the execution of the 
Fugitive Slave Law, conditions became a little more favor 
able for the Negroes in the North. Forcing upon the coun- 

WILLIAM STILL, an agent 

of the Underground 



The Negro In Our History 

try a radical proslavery policy which men formerly in 
different as to the issue could hot accept, the southern lead 
ers made friends for the Negroes in the North. The effort 
to impress the North into the service of recapturing fugi 
tive blacks, tended to raise up champions of individual 
liberty. The North had enacted personal liberty laws to 

counteract this slave-hunt 
ing, but these had failed. 
Sympathetic whites could 
not then go into the heart 
of the South to aid the 
blacks, but in the border 
States, and especially in 
cities like Baltimore and 
Washington, much was 
done for the improvement 
of Negroes through the 
many churches and schools 
established for their spe 
cial benefit. Among many 
other workers promoting 
this cause was Myrtilla 
Miner, for years a teacher 
of girls of color in the Dis 
trict of Columbia and the 
founder of the first girls school of methods in "Wash 

In spite of all of their difficulties some of the northern 
free Negroes attained national prominence. 1 Among those 
to appear after the reaction was John B. Russwurm, the 
first Negro college graduate, a classmate of John P. Hale 
at Bowdoin in 1826. Kusswurm later went to Liberia and 

i These persons of color are given more honorable mention in 
Simmons s Men of Mark, in William Wells Brown s The Black Man, 
and in his Rising Son. 


Blazing the Way 


served as governor. Dr. James McCune Smith, a distin 
guished graduate in medicine of the "Omversity of Glasgow 
and for years a practitioner in the city of New York, was 
better educated than Russwurm. Dr. Smith Prominent 
was a mixed breed of about equal proportion Negroes, 
of Caucasian and African blood. In statue he was somewhat 
thick and corpulent. He 
had a fine head with a 
broad and lofty brow, 
round, full face, firm 
mouth, and dazzling eyes. 
As an educated man given 
to writing, he was easily 
drawn into the discussion 
on the race question, which 
his knowledge of history, 
science, and literature en 
abled him to treat in a 
scholarly way. He was also 
an eloquent speaker who 
always made himself clear 
and talked to the point. 

In the field of writers 
there stood two other men 
as the first actual historians produced by the race. These 
were William C. Nell and William Wells Brown. There 
was then so much talk about the Negroes that William C. 
men wanted to know more about the achieve- NeU 
ments of the race. These writers supplied this need. Nell 
was a native of Boston, a man of medium height, slim, gen 
teel figure, quick step, elastic movements, a thoughtful yet 
pleasant brow, and thin face. Chaste in his conversation and 
devoted to literature, he passed as a man of learning with 
the reputation of being a person of unimpeachable character. 
Nell wrote a book, entitled Colored Patriots of the American 


The Negro In Our History 




Blazing the Way 


Revolution, a volume containing numerous facts of the 
history of the race. lie wrote other books of less impor 
tance and collected data which made him the best informed 
man in this field during his time. 
William Wells Brown, the other writer, was born in 


1816. His 

slave and 



mother was a 
his father a 
Serving in 

St. Louis in an office of 
Elijah P. Love joy before 
the editor was forced to go 
to Alton, Brown received 
his inspiration and start in 
education. He escaped 
North, where William 
he took an WeUs Brown, 
active part in the work 
of the Underground Rail 
road. From 1843 to 1849 
he served as a lecturer of 
the American Antislav- 
ery Society. He then vis 
ited England and France, 
where he came into contact 

with such lovers of freedom, as James Houghton, Richard 
Cobden, Victor Hugo, and M. De Tocqueville, as set forth in 
his Three Years in Europe. Brown then published Clotelle; 
or the President s Daughter, a narrative of slave life in the 
Southern States. He studied medicine during these years, 
but never practiced much, as he was busily engaged in ad 
vancing the cause of freedom. He was a regular contributor 
to the London Daily News, The Liberator, Frederick Doug 
lass s Paper, and The National Anti-Slavery Standard. In 
1854 Brown published Sketches of Places and People 



The Negro In Our History 

Abroad. His claims as an historian, however, are based on 
The Black Man, which appeared in 1863, The Negro in the 
Rebellion, published in 1866, and The Rising Son, brought 
out in 1882. Up to that date he had done more than any 
other writer to popularize Negro history. 

There were at this time before the American public a 
number of other prominent Negroes ministering to other 
needs wherever necessary. There appeared Ira Aldridge, 
the successful Shakespearean actor; Edmonia Lewis, the 

sculptor; Edwin M. Bannister 
and William H. Simpson, paint 
ers of promise; Phillip A. Bell 
and Samuel E. Cornish, talented 
editors of the Colored American; 
James M. Whitfield and Frances 
E. W. Harper, writers of popular 
verse; Charles L. Reason, the 
educator called in 1849 to the 
chair of Mathematics and Belles 
Lettres of New York Central Col 
lege; and George B. Vashon, a 
graduate of Oberlin, admitted to 

the bar in 1847, but rather devoted to education at New 
York Central College, where he distinguished himself in 
teaching the classics. 

Some of the useful preachers were William P. Quinn, 
Alexander W. Wayman, Jabez Campbell, Daniel A. Payne, 
Peter Williams, William Douglas, Charles B. Ray, John F. 
Prominent Cook, Alexander Crummell, and Henry High- 
ministers. i an( j Garnett. Most of these clergymen, like 
the two last mentioned, rendered important service in higher 
positions after the Civil War. Alexander Crummell, a 
man of unadulterated blood, attracted unusual attention 
by happily combining with his commanding appearance 
and fluent speech a liberal education in the classics and 


Blazing the Way 


theology obtained at Cambridge University, England. He 
made an impression by delivering in England in 1848 an 
address on the life and character of Thomas Clarkson. 
Crummell emigrated to Africa in 1852, but returned to this 
country in 1873. 

One of the Negro students, because of whom the Canaan 
Academy in New Hampshire was closed, was Henry High 
land Garnett, the son of. a 
kidnapped African chief. 
He then sought education 
at the Oneida Institute 
under Beriah Green. He 
became a popular Presby- 
terian preacher and lec- 
turer, but did not come 
into his own Henry High- 
as a leader land Garnett. 
until he delivered to the 
Convention of Colored 
Americans at Buffalo, in 
1843, his famous address 
on the Negro. Recog- 
nized widely thereafter as 
a man of influence on the platform, he went in 1850 to 
carry his message to England, from which he proceeded to 
Jamaica to serve as a missionary. He served as a Presby 
terian minister in Washington and New York City, and 
for a few years was the President of Avery College. 

In these ranks unselfishly toiled David Ruggles, J. W. C. 
Pennington, Samuel R. Ward, and Josiah Henson. Rug 
gles was a man of African blood, medium size, gentle 
address and polite language. He resided in David 
the city of New York where he became an Buggies, 
eternal enemy of slaveholders, bringing to that city ser 
vants, whose escape to freedom Ruggles often effected by 



The Negro In Our History 

means of the Underground Railroad. Deeply interested in 
moral, social and political progress of the free Negro in 
the North, Ruggles published for several years The Mirror 
of Liberty, a quarterly magazine advocating the rights of 
the Negroes. In this work he exhibited unusual wit and 
logic in hurling blows at his opponents, as is well evidenced 
by his pamphlet, entitled David M. Eees, M.D., Used Up. 
In this Ruggles exposed the 
fallacy of the ardent colon- 
izationists who had advo 
cated the expatriation of 
.the Negroes. 

J. W. C. Pennington was 
J. W. 0. born a slave 
Pennington. j n Maryland. 
He was a man of common 
size, of unadulterated blood 
and of strongly marked 
African features, slightly 
inclined to corpulency, with 
an athletic frame and a 
good constitution. He had 
no opportunities for early 
education, but after his re 
lease from bondage he so 
applied himself to the 
study of the languages, 

history, literature and theology that he became a proficient 
preacher in the Presbyterian denomination. He served as 
pastor of a church in Hartford, Connecticut, where he won 
distinction as a preacher and a lecturer. He then made 
several trips to Europe to attend Congresses at Paris, Brus 
sels and London. On these occasions he was invited to 
preach and speak before some of the most refined and aris 
tocratic audiences of Europe. In recognition of his scholar- 


Blazing the Way 


ship, the University of Heidelberg conferred upon him the 
degree of Doctor of Divinity. 

Samuel R. Ward, thanks to aid received from Gerrit 
Smith, obtained a liberal education in the classics and in 
theology. For several years he acceptably served a white 
congregation of the Presbyterian denomination at Soutli 

Butler, New York. He 
was a black man, standing 
above six feet in height, 
distinguished by a strong 
voice, and energetic ges 
tures. He shared with 
Fred Douglass the honor 
of being one Samuel E. 
of the most Ward - 
popular orators of his day. 
He directed his appeal to 
the understanding rather 
than to the imagination ; 
but, says a contemporary, 
"So forcibly did they 
take possession of it that 
the heart yielded. Ideas 
formed the basis of his 
method. His greater 
strength lay in knowing that words and ideas are not 
inseparable. He never endeavored to be ornamental, al 
though he was not inelegant. He was concise without 
being abrupt, clear and forcible without using extraordi 
nary stress. Thus equipped for the deliverance of his great 
message, he preached or lectured in all the churches, halls 
and school houses in Western and Central New York. His 
work extended to other parts of the North and to Jamaica 
and England. 
Josiah Heiison had neither the intellect nor the natural 



The Negro In Our History 

gifts of some of these men, but served as an example of the 
capability of the Negro. His experiences in slavery were 
Josiah Henson. so strange and peculiarly romantic that on 
hearing his story Mrs. Harriet Beecher Stowe reconstructed 
and embellished it so as to form the famous narrative known 
as Uncle Tom s Cabin. That he was the original Uncle 

a Tom, however, has been 

disputed. Josiah Henson 
settled in Canada and 
then rendered service in 
promoting the escape of 
118 Kentucky slaves by 
means of the Underground 
Railroad through Ohio and 
Indiana. He thereafter 
devoted himself to preach 
ing and education among 
his people, serving with 
Hiram Wilson as one of 
the founders of the Brit 
ish-American Manual La 
bor Institute. He engaged 
also in business in Canada, 
lectured throughout the 
North in behalf of the 

emancipation of the slaves, and finally visited England, 
where he was received by some of the leading men of that 
country and by Queen Victoria. 




IN the proportion that slavery became an exploitation 
effort merely for the enrichment of the whites, the free 
Negroes who lived in the South became more and more 
undesirable in the eyes of the planters who had reduced 
the majority of slaves to the plane of beasts The Cause, 
of burden. 1 Debased also to a lower status, the free Ne 
groes naturally thought of making an effort to extri 
cate themselves from these untoward circumstances, remem 
bering always their former state when slavery was of a 
patriarchal order. During the first two or three decades 
of the nineteenth century, therefore, they gradually found 
their way to the North, first by the aid of masters philan- 
thropically inclined, especially the Quakers, who, seeing 
that their manumitted slaves had little chance for elevation 
in the midst of a slave society, sold out their holdings in 
the South and moved to the Northwest Territory where they 
undertook to establish them as freemen. 

Another stage in the transplantation of the free Negroes 
was reached when because of their being apparently a men 
ace to slavery the free Negroes were by legislation and pub- 

1 The story of colonization is given in documentary form in The 
African Repository, the official organ of the American Colonization 
Society. The attack on colonization is presented in William Jay s 
An Inquiry Into the Character and Tendency of the American Colo 
nization Society. See also J. H. B. Latrobe s Liberia; Its Origin, 
Rise, Progress and Results; John H. T. McPherson s History of 
Liberia; Frederick Starr s Liberia; Description, History, Problems; 
C. G. Woodson s Century of Negro Migration, Chapter IV; and The 
Journal of Negro History, Vol. I, pp. 276-301, 318-338; II, 209-228. 


154 The Negro In Our History 

lie opinion driven out of the South immediately or within 
a specified time. This forced into the North such a large 
number of free Negroes that there arose a strong protest 
from various communities, and some of them agitated pro 
hibiting the immigration of Negroes into their common 
wealths. Negroes were then coming into the North in larger 
numbers than could be easily absorbed, and coming, too, at 
the time when thousands of foreigners were immigrating 
into this country, they caused an intense race prejudice to 
develop against their group. From these two forces that 
is, the effort to drive the Negroes from the South and the 
attempt to turn them away from the North came a great 
impulse to the movement to colonize Negroes abroad. The 
condition of the free Negroes was such that it would seem 
that they should have been willing to go. They were pro 
scribed by employers who preferred whites; they were 
denied consideration in the courts when they appealed to 
them for being imposed upon by ill-designing persons ; and 
they were subject to the attacks of mobs spurred on to 
action by almost any petty offense committed by one of the 
free population of color. 

The idea of colonization was not then new. From the 
very beginning of the antislavery movement there was an 
effort to provide for restoring the Africans to their native 
land. Such a scheme was developed by the Quakers under 
the inspiration of George Keith as early as 1713 and was 
forever thereafter kept before the people throughout Amer 
ica. In the beginning this idea was that of those persons 
sympathizing with the Negroes and desiring to ameliorate 
their condition by emancipation, but who were unable to 
think of incorporating them into their own society to live 
with the whites on a plane of equality. 

The scheme was further advanced by Fothergill and Gran- 
ville Sharp, and was given a new meaning by Anthony 
Benezet, who, having much confidence in the intellectual 

Colonization 155 

power of the Negroes, felt that they might be colonized 
nearer to the white people. His proposal was that they 
should be settled on the western lands, which Promoters of 
were ceded to the Congress of the Confeder- colonization, 
ation. In this he was supported by a number of noted men 
of his time, chief among whom were Thomas Brannagaii 
and Thomas Jefferson. During the Revolution, however, 
the manumissions of Negroes had led to the emancipation 
of a sufficiently large group of intelligent ones to justify 
the expectation that their liberation was not an experi 
ment, should they be prepared by education and religious 
instruction; and the number of Negroes receiving their 
freedom during this time did not render an urgent agitation 
for the colonization of them abroad a necessity. 

During the closing years of the eighteenth century and 
the first two decades of the nineteenth century, however, 
the desire for the colonization of the Negroes abroad became 
more widespread. Many slaveholders be- projects 
lieved that the then ever-increasing important abroad, 
institution of slavery could be maintained only by removing 
from this country the most striking argument for its aboli 
tion, the free Negro; and the foreigners then crowding 
the free blacks out of the industries in the North hoped to 
remove them from the field of competition. Colonization, 
therefore, received a new impetus. The movement was no 
longer a means of uplift for the Negro but rather a method 
of getting rid of an undesirable class that slavery might 
be thoroughly engrafted upon our country. 

Up to this time, however, there had not been any unify 
ing influence to give the movement the support adequate 
to its success. The various advocates of the deportation 
of the Negroes had done little more than to NO concerted 
express their views. A few had set forth action, 
some very elaborate plans as to how the machinery for the 
transportation of the Negroes abroad could be easily worked 


The Negro In Our History 

out. Replying, in 1811, to Ann Mifflin, desiring an opinion 
on the matter of African colonization, Thomas Jefferson said 
that he considered it the most desirable measure which 
could be adopted for the gradual drawing off of the black 
population. "Nothing," thought he, "is more to be wished 
than that the United States should thus undertake to make 
such an establishment on the coast of Africa. Unwilling, 
however, to content himself with 
this mere discussion, Paul Cuffe, a 
New England Negro known to the 
high seas, transported and estab 
lished thirty-eight Negroes on the 
west coast of Africa in 1815. This 
was the first actual effort at coloni- 
Paul Cuffe. zation by Americans, 
and it served as an unusual stimu 
lus to the movement. Cuffe recom 
mended, however, that the region 
around the Cape of Good Hope be 
selected for colonization. 

The colonization sentiment there 
after continued to grow. In the 
mountains of Tennessee and Ken 
tucky, where the infiltration of slaves had made it im 
practicable for those emancipators in the mountains 
to continue to attack the institution, there developed a 
number of flourishing colonization societies which stim 
ulated the movement. The Union Humane Society, an 
In the West, organization founded by Benjamin Lundy 
of Tennessee, had for one of its purposes the removal of 
Negroes beyond the pale of the white man. The 
same sentiment was expressed in Kentucky in its colon 
ization society in 1812 and 1815, when it requested of 
Congress that some territory be "laid off as an asylum for 
all those Negroes and mulattoes who have been and who 

PAUL CUFFE, the first actual 

Colonization 157 

may thereafter be emancipated within the United States, 
and that such donations, allowances, encouragements, and 
assistance be afforded them as may be necessary for carry 
ing them thither and settling them therein, and that they 
be under such regulations and government in all respects 
as your wisdom shall direct." Encouraged by Charles 
Fenton Mercer, a slaveholder of colonization tendencies, the 
Virginia Assembly, which, in 1800, had taken up with the 
President of the United States the question of colonizing 
emancipated slaves and free Negroes, passed a resolution in 
1816 asking the American Government to find a place of 
asylum on the Northern Pacific coast on which to settle 
free Negroes and those afterwards emancipated in Virginia. 
That very day a number of persons who had for years 
been interested in this movement met in Washington to 
effect a permanent organization. Among these persons who 
had fostered the cause of colonization was Organization. 
Robert Finley, a Presbyterian pastor who had served as 
president of the University of Georgia and had been in 
touch with Paul Cuffe. There appeared, too, Samuel J. 
Mills, a missionary and a promoter of all movements tend 
ing to uplift the man far down, Hezekiah Niles, the editor 
of the famous Niles Register, Elijah J. Mills, a Congress 
man of Massachusetts, and Elisha B. Caldwell, clerk of the 
United States Supreme Court. Among the men who at 
tended the first meeting were Henry Clay, the compromiser, 
Francis Scott Key, the author of the Star Spangled Ban 
ner, John Eandolph, a United States Senator from Vir 
ginia, Judge Bushrod Washington, a brother of George 
Washington, and Charles March, Congressman from Ver 
mont. The first general conference of the colonizationists 
held in the home of Elisha B. Caldwell, was devoted largely 
to prayer for the success cf the enterprise. Addresses were 
made by Henry Clay, discussing the delicacy of the ques 
tion and expressing the purpose of the meeting and the con- 


The Negro In Our History 

dition on which he had attended. The principal address, 
however, was delivered by Elisha B. Caldwell. Various 
views were expressed to indicate that although the members 
from the North had in mind the interests of the free Ne 
groes, those from the South were primarily concerned with 
getting rid of this element. 

Bushrod Washington was chosen president, and the ma 
chinery was constructed 
for the extension of the 
work of the Society into 
all States. In the course 
of time, therefore, we hear 
of several States having 
colonization societies, and 

were organ 
ized in ordi 
nary towns. 
The purposes of these or 
ganizations varied accord 
ing to the personnel of 
the management and the 
section of the country in 
which the Society was 
founded. The national or 
ganization established The 

African Repository, the organ of the Society, and in that 
way made its declaration as to purpose to the whole 
world. Masters were not necessarily urged to free their 
slaves, but each community was called upon to take steps 
1o provide for the transplantation to Africa of all slaves 
who might be liberated at the will of the masters con 
cerned or purchased for this purpose, as was the case of 
Lott Gary, a Baptist preacher, who, in addition to ren 
dering his denomination valuable service in Liberia, served 

in some of them 

Plans to 




Colonization 159 

there creditably also as a governor of one of the provinces. 
The well-known promoter of colonization in later years was 
the successful lawyer and business man, John H. B. Latrobe, 
who, as secretary of the Maryland Colonization Society and 
finally President of the American Colonization Society, did 
more than any other individual to advance this cause. 

It was finally decided to promote colonization in Africa. 
The United States Government was approached, and the 
matter received the attention of President Monroe, who sub 
mitted it to Congress. Upon his recommendation it was 
agreed to purchase in Africa certain territory lying near 
the Senegal River on the western coast. In making this 
purchase accordingly the country was designated as Liberia 
because it was to be the land of freedom. Its capital was 
called Monrovia in honor of James Monroe, the President 
of the United States under whom it was founded. 

The problem then was to develop in this country a num 
ber of intelligent Negroes who might constitute a nucleus 
around which a government could be established. Here we 
see that the blacks were encouraged to develop p repa ration 
the power to work out their own salvation. It of coloniza- 
gave an impetus to the movement for more 
thorough education of the Negroes at the very time when 
the South was trying to restrict them in such opportunities. 
Those Negroes to be sent out were to be trained in the 
manual arts, science, and literature, and in the higher 
professions. John B. Russwurm, an alumnus of Bowdoin, 
the first Negro to be graduated by a college in the United 
States, went as an educator to Liberia, where, after render 
ing valuable services as an educator and public functionary, 
he died. 

As the colonizationists had learned from experience that 
it was necessary to begin with the youth, better institutions 
of learning for Negroes were established for this purpose. 
Occasionally one would hear of a southern planter who 


The Negro In Our History 

freed his Negroes and sent them to eastern schools to 
undergo such education as would prepare them for higher 
life in their new home in Africa. The Society, however, 
soon found itself in a dilemma of telling the people of this 
country that because the free Negroes were a depraved 
class they could not be elevated in this country, and at the 
same time encouraging these Negroes and their friends to 
promote the education of 
the few to be deported that 
they might have that same 
mental development which 
the whites in this country 
had experienced. 

The colonizationists soon 
found themselves facing 
other difficulties. The very 
people for whom Liberia 
was established arrayed 
themselves against it. 2 It 
was in vain that some con 
tended that 
it was a phil 
anthropic enterprise, since 
the meaning of coloniza 
tion varied, on the one 
hand, according to the 
use the slave-holding class 
hoped to make of it and, on the other hand, accord 
ing to the intensity of the attacks directed against it. 
The abolitionists and the free people of color opposed the 
Society because of the acquiescent attitude of coloniza 
tionists towards the persecution of the free blacks both in 
the North and the South. Almost before the colonization 

Difficulties of 


JOHN B. RUSSWURM, first Negro to 

receive a degree from an American 


2 L. R. Mehlinger, The Attitude of the Free Negro Toward African 
Colonization in The Journal of Negro History, Vol. I, pp. 276-301. 

Colonization 161. 

societies had been organized, therefore, the free people 
of color of Richmond, Virginia, thought it advisable to de 
nounce the movement, saying that if they had to be colo 
nized they preferred to be settled "in the remotest corner 
of the land of their nativity." They passed a resolution 
requesting Congress to grant them a portion of territory 
on the Missouri River. 

About the same time about three thousand free Negroes 
of Philadelphia took even higher ground. They claimed 
this country as their native land because their ancestors 
were the first successful cultivators of its soil. The protests 
They felt themselves entitled to participation of Negroes, 
in the blessing of the soil which their blood and sweat had 
moistened. Moreover, they were determined never to sepa 
rate themselves from the slave population of this country 
as they were brothers by ties of consanguinity, of suffering 
and of wrongs." In 1831 a Baltimore meeting of free 
Negroes denounced the American Colonization Society as 
being founded more upon selfish policy than in the true 
principles of beneficence and, therefore, as far as it regards 
the life-giving principles of its operations, it was not enti 
tled to their confidence and should be viewed by them * * with 
that caution and distrust which happiness" demanded. 

The free people of color in Boston inquired of those 
desiring to send them to Africa because they were natives 
of that land : * * How can a man be born in two countries at 
the same time ? Referring also to the pro- The feeling 
posal to stop the slave trade by the establish- ^ Bost n. 
ment of a colony on the western coast of that continent, 
they said: "We might as well believe that a watchman 
in the city of Boston would prevent thievery in New York ; 
or that the custom house there would prevent goods from 
being smuggled into any port in the United States." The 
Negroes of New York declared about the same time that 
the colonizationists were men of mistaken views, that their 

162 The Negro In Our History 

offer to colonize the oppressed free people was unjust, and 
illiberal, tending to excite prejudice in the community. 
The free Negroes of Hartford, Connecticut, referred to the 
absurd idea of sending a nation of ignorant men to teach a 
nation of ignorant men. They asked, moreover, why 
should we leave this land so dearly bought by the blood, 
groans and tears of our fathers ? This is our home ; here let 
us live and here let us die. 

Some of the most distinguished men were effectively 
using the rostrum and press to impede the progress of the 
American Colonization Society. 
The best example of concerted 
action against the colonization 
movement, however, came from 
the annual convention of the free 
colored people held first in Phila 
delphia in 1830 and afterward in 

Support of that and other cities 
distinguished annually until the 

men - Civil War. The 

moving spirit of this enterprise ROBERT PURVIS 

was James Forten, ably assisted 

by Robert Ray, James Cassey, Robert Purvis and James 
McCrummell. They early took the ground that they were 
unable to arrive at any other conclusion than that the 
doctrines which the society inculcated were "suitable to 
those who hold religion in direct violation of the golden 
rule, and that the inevitable tendency of this doctrine was 
to strengthen the cruel prejudice of their enemies and 
retard their advancement in morals, literature and science 
in short, to extinguish the last glimmer of hope and 
throw an impenetrable gloom over their former and more 
reasonable prospects." 

In 1852 there was held in Baltimore a pro-colonization 
meeting at which, after some discussion, it was decided to 

Colonization 163 

examine the different localities for migration, giving pref 
erence to Liberia. Liberia became the bone of contention, 
as very few Negroes were willing to go to Colonization in 
that country and a majority of the Negroes Baltimore, 
in Baltimore were opposed to colonization of any sort. As 
these delegates had come from various parts of Maryland 
and did not voice the sentiment of the people of Baltimore, 
they were hissed and jeered from an outside meeting which 
developed almost into a mob, intimidating the delegates to 
the extent that they were not permitted to exercise that 
freedom of thought which the exigencies of the hour re 
quired. Another meeting of the Baltimore citizens de 
nounced this assembly as unrepresentative and proceeded 
to proclaim the determination of the Baltimore people to 
oppose the policy of permanently attaching the free people 
of color to this country. 

This feeling of antagonism of the free people of color 
manifested itself also in New York in 1848. W. S. Ball, 
who had been sent to Liberia by the free peo- An incident 
pie of Illinois, undertook to report there to a ^ New York - 
colonization meeting as to the lay of the land. In express 
ing himself as to the attractions and opportunities of that 
country he was interrupted by one Morrell, who approached 
the platform and addressed the meeting, saying that the 
question as to colonization and the Liberia humbug had been 
settled long ago. The audience was then disturbed with 
hisses and jeers, and finally with yells for a fight, until the 
room was thrown into pandemonium and the meeting broken 
up in disorder. 

Colonization seemed destined then to have rough sailing. 
Although the movement had the cooperation Th e f a ii ure 
of an unusually large number of influential of African 
men both in the South and in the North, it 
failed to carry out the desired object of taking the free Ne 
groes over to Africa. From 1820 to 1833 only 2,885 Ne- 

164 The Negro In Our History 

groes were sent out by the Society. More than 2,700 of 
this number were taken from the slave States and about 
two-thirds of these slaves manumitted on the condition of 
their migrating. Of the 7,836 sent out of the United States 
by 1852, 2,720 were born free, 204 purchased their freedom, 
3,868 were emancipated in view of removing them to 
Liberia, and 1,044 were liberated Africans sent out by the 
United States Government. 

In the midst of the oppression of the free Negroes and 
the necessity for finding an immediate remedy, however, 
other schemes for colonization now came forward. There 
was proposed a colony of the Negroes in Texas, in 1833, 
prior to the time when the State became over-run with 
Other slaveholders. The opportunities of this coun- 

schemes. try se emed to indicate that there was some rea 

son for considering this plan feasible, but others thought 
that it would never suit Negroes because of the fugitives 
there from Mexico and the presence of a superior race of 
people there already speaking a different language and hav 
ing a different religion. There- was some talk, too, of the 
transplanting of a number of Negroes to British Guiana. 
It was thought that because Santo Domingo had become 
an independent republic, it would prove to be an asylum 
for the free people of color in this country, as Jefferson a 
number of years before had predicted. 3 

This tendency towards the West Indies was promoted 
by the dearth of labor there resulting from the emancipa 
tion of the slaves, which, thanks to the untiring efforts of 
The danger of Wilberforce and his coworkers, was effected 
the exodus. by 1833. The West Indies offered induce 
ments to Negroes immigrating into their country. Among 
these were Trinidad, which received a number of Negroes 
from Baltimore, Annapolis, and Philadelphia^ Jamaica, 

3C. G. "\Yoodson, A Century of Xegro Migration, pp. 67-80. 



with its many opportunities, placed her claims for these 
refugees and sent her agents into this country to proclaim 
the beauties of her civilization and the opportunities of the 
land. So favorable did this scheme become that the colo- 
nizationists had to redouble their efforts to prevent an 
unusually large number of Negroes from going to English- 
speaking colonies. Living on a plane of equality with the 

whites and enjoying the 
rights of citizens, they 
would as freemen become 
too powerful factors in 
the hands of the British, 
should they again under 
take to wage war against 
the United States. 

The most successful col 
onization, however, was 
a sort of Migration 
migration at to Canada. 
first proposed by Anthony 
Benezet, Thomas Branna- 
gan and Thomas Jefferson. 
This was the migration to 
distant lands in America, 
especially to British Amer 
ica. 4 Canada had served as an asylum for free Negroes 
who had made their escape into that country, but during 
the period of the cruel oppression of their class Negroes 
began to migrate there in large numbers. They secured 
land for farms, built homes, constructed churches, estab 
lished schools and, in fact, covered a considerable portion 
of southern Ontario. In spite of the cold climate, the 
abolitionists and the free Negroes themselves usually con- 

slavery leader in England 

4 VV. II. Siebert, The Underground Railroad from Slavery to 

166 The Negro In Our History 

sidered it more practical for Negroes to settle there than 
to avail themselves of the opportunities offered by the 
American Colonization Society in Africa. 

Nearer to the Civil War there were established in Canada 
a number of Negro communities and towns. They exhibited 
the evidences of civilization found in other parts, and the 
Progress In Negroes themselves gave proof of what might 
Canada. b e done, should their race as a whole be 

given the opportunity to make of itself what it would. 
They had learned to cultivate the soil, market their 
products, and engage in local manufactures. They were, 
moreover, not only coming into contact with the commercial 
centers of the United States but had begun to export and 
import from abroad. Out of these colonies in Canada 
emerged a number of intelligent Negroes who thereafter 
became factors in the progress of their race. 

In the course of time, however, when the conditions of the 
free Negroes in Canada did not seem so inviting, a larger 
number of them began to think that colonization elsewhere 
Recrudes- was a necess ity, although few of them believed 
cence of that they should go to Africa. To deal with 

on< this question there was organized in 1853 a 
national council of the leading Negroes, attracting repre 
sentatives from as many as twelve State conventions. So 
divided on this question had the Negroes become, however, 
that only those persons who believed in colonization some 
where were asked to attend. Among the persons thus inter 
ested were William Webb and Martin R. Delaney, of Pitts- 
burg, Doctor J. Gould Bias and Franklin Turner, of Phila 
delphia, Augustus R. Green, of Allegheny, Pennsylvania, 
James M. Whitfield, of New York, William Lambert, of 
Michigan, Henry Bibb, James Theodore Holly, of Canada, 
and Henry M. Collins, of California. Frederick Douglass, 
an uncompromising enemy to colonization, criticized this 
step as uncalled for, unwise, unfortunate, and premature. 



"A convention to consider the subject of emigration," said 
he, "when every delegate must declare himself in favor of 
it beforehand as a condition of taking his seat, is like the 
handle of the jug, all on one side." James M. Whitfield, 
the writer of verse, came to the defense of his co workers, 

continuing a literary duel 
with Douglass for a num 
ber of weeks. 

The convention was ac 
cordingly held. In it there 
appeared three parties, one 
led by Martin R. Delaney, 
who desired to go to the 
Niger Valley in Africa, 
another by James M. Whit- 
field, whose interests seemed 
to be in Cen 
tral America, 
and a third by Theodore 
Holly, who showed a pref 
erence for Haiti. The lead 
ers of the respective par 
ties were commissioned to 
go to these various coun 
tries to do what they could 
in carrying out their schemes. Holly went to Haiti and 
took up with the Minister of the Interior the question of 
admitting Negroes from the United States. 

Before any results from these deliberations could be ob 
tained, there appeared evidence of considerable interest in 
emigration. This was especially true of Illinois and In 
diana, from which commissioners had been sent out to spy 
the land. This is evidenced, too, by the sen- interest in 
timent expressed by delegates attending the the West- 
Cleveland Convention in 1854. The next colonization con- 

sent out. 

MARTIN R. DELANEY, an author, 

physician, and leader before the 

Civil War 

168 The Negro In Our History 

vention was held at Chatham, Canada West, in 1856. One 
of the , important features of this meeting was the hearing 
of the report of Holly, who had gone to Haiti the previous 
year. From this same meeting Martin R. Delaney pro 
ceeded on his mission to the Niger Valley in Africa. There 
he concluded a treaty with eight African kings, offering in 
ducements to Negroes to emigrate. In the meantime, James 
Redpath had gone to Haiti and accomplished some things 
that Holly failed to achieve. He was appointed Haitian 
Commissioner of Emigration in the United States, with 
Holly as his coworker. They succeeded in sending to Haiti 
as many as two thousand emigrants, the first sailing in 1861 ; 
but owing to their unpreparedness and the unfavorable 
climate, not more than one-third of them remained. 



BECAUSE of the hard lot of the Negro, the opposition to 
slavery was fanned into such a flame during the thirties that 
the movement could no longer be properly designated anti- 
slavery. It was abolition, an effort to effect William Lloyd 
the immediate emancipation of the slaves, Garrison, 
since to hold them in bondage was contrary to the law of 
God. 1 The most formidable leader of this radical reform 
was William Lloyd Garrison, who came forward with the 
argument that slavery was contrary to the natural rights of 
humanity, had bad effects upon the southern whites, and 
handicapped the whole Union, not only as an evil but as a 
sin. 2 Coming at a time when the world was again stirred 
by the agitation for the rights of man in Europe, this radi 
cal movement secured much more attention than it would 
have otherwise received. Men were then concerned with 
the better treatment of paupers, convicts, and the insane. 
They were directing their attention to special education for 
dependents and delinquents. There was an increasing in 
terest in temperance, the rights of the laboring man then 

1 William McDonald, Select Statutes, 385-437 ; A. B. Hart, Slaver;/ 
and Abolition, 152-295; his History Told by Contemporaries, IV, 24, 
42, 72-143; William Jay, Miscellaneous Writings; W. P. and F. J. 
Garrison, William Lloyd Garrison, passim; F. L. Olmsted, Back 
Country; F. A. Kemble, Georgian Plantation, passim; D. R. Goodloe, 
Southern Platform; H. von Hoist, History of the United States, 
ill; J. B. McMaster, History of the United States, VI, 567-571. 

2 See Appendix for extract from the Liberator. 



The Negro In Our History 

claimed all but national attention, and woman suffrage came 
forward as a promising reform of the time. It was helpful 
to the Garrisonian movement, too, that new fields of oppor 
tunities were then opening in the North and West. With 
the growth of foreign trade, there arose a need for that sort 
of labor which the unskilled slave could not furnish. Ap 
pearing then at this time, Garrison could more easily 
arouse the people of the whole country as to the inevitable 
doom of a slaveholding nation. 

Basing his fight, therefore, on moral grounds and con 
tending that slavery could not 
be defended, he evoked the cen 
sure of the proslavery people, 
who became just as radical and 
fiery in the defense of the insti 
tution as he was in attacking it. 
Slavery a After having been 
moral evil. forced out of Balti 
more because of his antislavery 
utterances he went to Boston and 
founded the Liberator. 3 The re 
sult was such a clash of words 
and a multitude of threats that 
it seemed likely that the South 
might secede. This feeling was further intensified by a 
number of uprisings among Negroes during the first three 
decades of the nineteenth century, culminating in Nat 
Turner s insurrection in Virginia in 1831. But intense 
as this excitement became, Garrison could not be hushed. 
His very words will give a better idea as to the earnest 
ness of his purpose. He said, "I shall strenuously con- 

3 Almost any work on abolition deals largely with the career of 
William Lloyd Garrison, but the standard biography of the reformer 
is Wendell Phillips Garrison and Francis Jackson Garrison s William 
Lloyd Garrison, the story of his life told by his children, 


Abolition 171 

tend for the immediate enfranchisement of our slave popu 
lation. I will be as uncompromising as justice on the 
subject I am not wrong, I will not equivocate, I will not 
retreat a single inch and I will be heard." 

The Liberator, of course, could not have at that time 
a very wide circulation, but it did find sufficient friends 
interested in the cause to maintain the publication. Gar 
rison showed that he was by nature a jour- Garrison as 
nalist whose opportunity was unexcelled. He a Journalist, 
always succeeded in making his newspaper lively by con 
ducting editorial combats and in 
furiating his antagonists. His 
work was made more effective by 
his fire-eating oratory. "No ban- 
derillero," says A. B. Hart, "ever 
more skillfully planted his darts 
in the flanks of an enraged bull ! 
He had no m,ercy on slaveholders, 
accepted no excuses for their in 
stitution and did not distinguish 

between those of the patriarchial 

order and those exploiting the 

slaves. Intensely interested in his cause, he breathed the 
very earnestness of his truths in everything that he said. 
Returning from one of his meetings he remarked: "The 
whole town has known of freedom. Every tongue is in 
motion. If an earthquake had occurred it could not have 
excited more consternation." 

To promote the cause effectively national organizations 
soon seemed a necessity. On October 29, 1833, therefore, 
there was issued by Arthur Tappan, Joshua Leavitt, and 
Elizur Wright, officers of the New York Antislavery So 
ciety, a call for antislavery representatives to meet in Phila 
delphia on the fourth of the following December. Sixty 


The Negro In Our History 

delegates appeared and adopted a constitution, 4 together 
with a declaration of sentiments, the original draft of which 
was drawn by William Lloyd Garrison. This organization 
for some years thereafter served as a clearing house for 
the expression of abolition sentiment, but because of differ 
ences arising in the 
ranks thereafter, it had 
to share the field with 
an American and For 
eign Antislavery Soci 
ety meeting the require 
ments of those who could 
not conform with the 
methods and procedure 
of the American Anti- 
slavery Society. 

Along with Garrison 
worked a number of rad 
icals. 5 There stood 
Wendell Phillips, a well 
made, remarkably grace 
ful person of expressive 
countenance with a sort 
of fascination in the soft gaze of his eyes, attracting atten 
tion wherever his beautifully musical voice was raised in 
Wendell behalf of the slave. Had he been interested 

Phillips. j n some O ther element than the Negro, he 

would to-day be known to history as the superior of Pitt, 
Sheridan, or Burke. Although having bright prospects for 
a future as a popular public man, he early chose the part of 
cooperating with the much-hated abolitionists and ever 

* See Appendix for a copy of this constitution. 

5 The efforts of these various workers are sketched in William 
Wells Brown s Rising Son, Ch. on Abolitionists; A. B. Hart s Slavery 
and Abolition, pp. 152-323: and W. P. Garrison and F. ,T. Garrison s 
William Lloyd Garrison. 






174 The Negro In Our History 

thereafter wielded his eloquence in behalf of freedom and 

A number of others aligned themselves with these cham 
pions of liberty. There was the brilliant scholar, Edmund 
Quincy, not so eloquent as Wendell Phillips, but none 
Other co- the less staunch in his advocacy of freedom, 

workers. There appeared also Francis Jackson, one of 

the first to stand by Garrison when the mob broke up his 
antislavery meeting in 1835. Maria Weston Chapman, 
another of this group, contributed much to the support of 
abolition by raising funds through the Antislavery Bazaar. 
Charles F. Hovey, the abolition merchant, gave large sums 
to support the cause. Eliza Lee Follen, a poet, sang of 
liberty and freedom. Sydney Howard Gay, the polished 
writer, boldly advocated instant emancipation. William 
J. Bowditch, a scholarly lawyer, used his talent to promote 
freedom. With sketches of intelligent Negroes Lydia Maria 
Child gave the race a hearing in circles formerly closed. 
Thomas Garrett kept the same fires burning in proslavery 

Prominent in this group was Samuel May, Jr., who for 
some years served efficiently as the general agent of the 
Society. When the cause of abolition seemed helpless, May 
Samuel May. abandoned a church paying him a lucrative 
salary that he might help to save the work, and, says an 
historian, "To his perseverance, industry, gentlemanly man 
ners and good sense the Society owed much of its success." 
Although simple and plain, he was an earnest speaker, 
showing such depth of thought that persons concerned with 
universal freedom learned to wait upon his words. 

Samuel J. May, another abolitionist of almost the same 
name, was a philanthropist by nature. He sympathized 
with Garrison and assisted in the organization of the So 
ciety, being one of the signers of Garrison s " Declaration 
of Sentiments," presenting the principles upon which the 



right of man to freedom is based and the call to all men to 
promote emancipation. May was one of the few who stood 
by Prudence Crandall in Canterbury, Connecticut, when 
she was by special enactment imprisoned because she dared 
to admit girls of color to her academy. He made his home 

a place of refuge for fugi 
tive slaves and opened his 
church to any intelligent 
lecturer who carried the 
message of freedom. 

To promote this cause a 
corps of workers were re 
quired to serve as lectur 
ers in the field. These had 
to do the most difficult 
work of win- Antislavery 
ning the pub- lecturers, 
lie to the movement. Hissed 
and jeered by proslavery 
sympathizers hurling upon 
them rotten eggs, sticks 
and stones, these agents un 
selfishly performed their 
task. Some neither asked 
nor received any compen 
sation; others gave their 
time and paid their own expenses. Among these lecturers 
who thus toiled was Abby Kelly Foster, the Joan of 
Arc of the antislavery movement. She was a slim but 
well proportioned and fine-looking woman of Abby Kelly 
bright eyes, clear voice, drawing such life-like Foster, 
pictures of the black woman in chains that one could not 
hear her without shedding tears. A logical, forceful 
speaker, successful with irony or argument and quick at 
repartee, Mrs. Foster usually convinced her audience or 



The Negro In Our History 

discomfited her opponents. Along with Mrs. Foster went 
her faithful husband, Stephen S. Foster. He was one of 
those who did not despise the cause in its day of small 
things. He labored incessantly to promote the work, and 
because of his unusual zeal and honest method of "hewing 
to the line and the plum 
met" he became the most 
unpopular of the antislav- 
ery agents. Yet he al 
ways told the truth, did 
not overstate a question 
and usually proved his 

There were others scarce 
ly less active. The elo 
quent Charles C. Bur- 
Less active leigh, one of 
lecturers. the most suc . 

cessful debaters champion 
ing the cause of the slave, 
would have been almost as 
effective as Wendell Phil 
lips had he not spoken 
rather fast. Burleigh ren 
dered the cause much aid 
rs a lecturer and the editor 

LUNRFORD LAXE, a native of North 

Carolina, who lectured in the North 

against slavery 

of The Pennsylvania Freeman. Lucy Stone, an unpre 
possessing but pleasant woman of medium stature, round 
face, sparkling eyes, and with her hair cut short, be 
came with her abundance of enthusiasm one of the most 
rctive abolitionists, moving the people by forceful argu 
ments and pathetic appeals. Susan B. Anthony, later 
known to greater fame as an advocate of woman suf 
frage, stood out as an eloquent abolition speaker with 
few equals. Andrew T. Foss left his pulpit to devote 



all of his time to abolition. Sallie Hollie put so much 
Scripture and prayer into her appeals that few refused her 
a hearing. Oliver Johnson, the ready debater, accom 
plished writer and eloquent speaker, not only served on 
the platform but at times edited The Herald of Freedom, 
The Antislavery Standard, and The Antislavery Bugle. 
Henry C. Wright devoted the best years of his life to the 
cause. The Grimke sisters, daughters of a prominent citi 
zen in Charleston, South Caro 
lina, left the South that they 
might without interruption bear 
witness against slavery. Charles 
B. Stebbins, the acute thinker 
and able speaker, also decidedly 
aided the movement. Nathaniel 
P. Rogers, with his penetrating 
mind, dealt hard blows at slavery 
through The Herald of Freedom. 
William Goodell and Theodore F. 
Weld exposed the institution by 
publishing works on slavery. 
James Miller McKim, a promoter 

of the Underground Railroad, was once the moving spirit 
of the Antislavery Society in Pennsylvania, where he was 
ably assisted by the untiring and eloquent Mary Grew. 

Abolition was put on its feet in Pennsylvania, however, by 
Lucretia Mott. 6 She was a woman of faultless head, thought 
ful countenance, beaming eyes, and full voice, hesitant in 
speech at the beginning and then growing James and 
easily eloquent. Assisted by a husband Lucretia Mott. 
giving his means and time to the work, Lucretia Mott stirred 
up the people. Abolitionist to the manner born, she endeav 
ored to effect a proscription of the products of slave labor 
by discouraging the use of clothing and foods produced in 


6 A. D. Hallowell, James and Lucretia Mott; Life and Letters. 


The Negro In Our History 

the South. She carried with her, to sweeten her tea, sugar 
produced by free labor rather than run the risk of having 
to use that produced by slaves. A woman of culture and 
conversant with the conditions obtaining among the slaves, 
she attracted the attention of the indifferent observer and 
impressed upon his mind a new thought of the man far 
down. In her attack on 
slavery no abolitionist was 
more fearless, none more 
successful in presenting 
the cause. 

Yet eloquent as was the 
appeal of white men in be 
half of the slave the aboli- 
Charles L. tionists soon 
Remond. realized that 

the Negro pleading his own 
cause could wield effective 
blows against slavery. The 
first Negro to be called to 
this service was Charles L. 
Remond, who, until the rise 
of Frederick Douglass, was 
probably the ablest repre 
sentative of the Negro race. He was small of stature, of 
spare build, neat and genteel in appearance. He possessed a 
pleasing voice and early attained rank as an acceptable 
speaker. A free-born Negro himself, he felt more keenly 
the prejudice against his class than he did the persecution 
of the slaves, and confined his speeches largely to the desired 
change in the attitude of the whites toward the people of 
color. So proud was he of being a free man of color that he 
often boasted that he had not a drop of slave blood in his 
veins. He contributed to newspapers and magazines fre- 




quent letters and articles exhibiting- clearness, force, and 
depth. It was said that no other man could put more real 
meaning in fewer words. Remond, thus equipped for his 
task, was employed by the Antislavery Society as a lec 
turer for about thirty years. In 1840 he attended the 
Convention of the World Antislavery Society in England, 
remaining abroad two years to lecture in Great Britain and 
Ireland, where he made- a very favorable impression. 

Other Negroes were al- 
s o successful. William 
Wells Brown thus served 
the Society from 1843 to 
1849, and also Lunsford 
Lane of North Carolina, 
some years later. So- 
journer Truth, by her 
mysterious commun- 
ings, seemed to acquire 
miraculous power as a co- 
worker of the abolitionists 
to stir audiences with her 
heavy voice, quaint lan 
guage and homely illustra 
tions. But another Negro 
thus employed was more 
successful. He was not 
merely a Negro asking for 
the rights of freemen, but 
the developed emancipated slave going through the country 
as the embodiment of what the slave was and what he might 
become. He was then not only the thing discussed by the 
abolitionists, but the union of the lecturer Frederick 
and his subject. Endowed, too, with philo- Douglass, 
sophical insight and broader intellect than most men, he 



The Negro In Our History 

soon developed an effective oratory with which nature had 
enriched his gifts. This man was Frederick Douglass. 7 
Unlike Remond, Douglass had much originality and un 
adorned eloquence rather than a fine flow of language. 
When the country, there 
fore, had heard Frederick 
Douglass, Remond became 
a second-rate man. This 
soured the spirit of the lat 
ter, who fell a victim of 
speaking disparagingly of 
his coworker. But Rem 
ond was not the only anti- 

The success slavery o r a- 
of Douglass. tor to p a i e 

intd insignificance on the 
approach of the "eloquent 
fugitive" from slavery in 
Maryland; for the people 
preferred to hear Douglass. 
And well might they de 
sire to see and hear this 
man. He was tall and well 
made, with a fully-devel 
oped forehead. He was dignified in appearance, polished in 
his language, and gentlemanly in his manner. A contempo 
rary said : * He is a man of lofty reason, natural and with 
out pretension ; always master of himself ; brilliant in the 
art of exposing and abstracting. Another said : "In his 
very look, his gesture, his whole manner, there is so much 
of genuine, earnest eloquence, that they have no time for re 
flection. Now you are reminded of one rushing down some 

7 See Frederick Douglass Narrative of the Life of Frederick Doug 
lass, as an American Slave, and his Life and Times of Frederick 
Douglass from 1811 to 1882. 


Abolition 181 

fearful steep, bidding you follow; now on some delightful 
stream, still beckoning you onward. In either case, no mat 
ter what your prepossessions or oppositions, you for the 
moment, at least, forget the justness or unjustness of the 
cause, and obey the summons, and loath, if at all, you re 
turn to your former post." 



IN the western part of the country, too, abolition was for 
economic reasons gradually gaining ground. There had 
always been much antislavery sentiment in the mountains 
of North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky and West Virginia. 
Abolition in When the intolerable condition of the Negroes 
the West. j n the South made it impossible for the persons 
in that part of the country to do for the Negroes what they 
desired, they moved into the Northwest Territory where 
they could carry out their plans for the uplift of the blacks. 
Accordingly, in these mountains there arose a number of 
antislavery societies. Among the persons operating as the 
nucleus around which this sentiment developed were such 
men as Benjamin Lundy in Tennessee, James G. Birney in 
Kentucky, and Daniel R. Goodloe in North Carolina. Other 
ideas, too, tended to influence the youth, as it happened in 
the case of the students in Maryville College in Tennessee, 
more than half of whom had become antislavery by the 
year 1841, and in that of Berea College in Kentucky, which 
developed from a group of students influenced largely by 
In Kentucky. Cassius M. Clay, the antislavery editor, ancfr 
John G. Fee, 1 the abolition orator who founded that in 

As this sentiment tended to spread in the proportion that 
the antislavery leaders of the western slave States were 
forced to go North, there was made possible a better chance 
for abolition in centers where it had been considered danger- 

i John G. Fee s Antislavery Manual. 


Further Protest 




.Trmv f\ VW.T?. CASSTTTS ^\F. CT.AY 

184 The Negro In Our History 

ous. In Lane Theological Seminary in Cincinnati, the ar 
dent discussion of slavery led to a sort of upheaval, result- 
Lane ing in a division of the students. Theodore 
Seminary. F Weld, one of this group, actually espoused 
the cause of Garrison and undertook to translate into action 
his theories of Negro uplift by actually teaching colored 
children. As Lane Theological Seminary was then attended 
by a number of southern students, a separation of those 
who had thus become divided was necessary. When the 
trustees tried to prevent further discussion of slavery 
four-fifths of the students withdrew. Fifty-four asserted 
their right to a freedom of discussion of this important 
topic, and under leaders like Asa Mahan and John Morgan 
retired to the Western Reserve and established Oberlin 
College. 2 

In that same section of Ohio, however, antislavery so 
cieties had already flourished under the leadership of 
Samuel Crothers, John Rankin, and Elizur Wright, later a 
The Western professor in the Western Reserve College. 
Reserve. These antislavery centers, too, were further 

strengthened by the coming of James G. Birney 3 from 
Kentucky, from which he had been driven because of his 
antislavery utterances. He first established in Cincin 
nati, Ohio, the Philanthropist, a newspaper which wielded 
great influence in preparing the minds of the people of this 
country for a fair discussion of slavery, although his life was 
several times endangered and his press was twice broken 
up and destroyed. 

Another group of abolitionists deserve honorable mention. 
These were reformers of a milder sort, who could neither 
tolerate radicalism nor approve the methods of some of the 

2 This is narrated in the First Annual Report of the America** 
Anti-Slavery Society. 

3 James G. Birney, The American Churches, the Bulwarks of Amer 
ican Slavery; and William Birney, James 0. Birney and His Times. 

Further Protest 


less ardent antislavery group. Among those taking this 
position was Dr. William Ellery Channing, a Unitarian 
minister of much fame in Boston and New- William E. 
port. His appeal was to the intellect rather Charming, 
than to the emotion. In presenting his case he wrote essays 
on slavery, making a forceful argument as to evil of the 
institution but suggesting 
some remedy other than in 
stant abolition. Along with 
Channing may be men 
tioned scores of writers like 
Fredrika Bremer, Frances 
Kemble, Henry Wadsworth 
Longfellow, James Russell 
Lowell, and John G. Whit- 

There were abolitionists 
who in addition to appear 
ing on the platform other 
wise rendered the cause 
valuable service. Among 
these were Arthur and 
Lewis Tappan, successful 
merchants of New York, 
who had for years sup 
ported the cause of coloni 
zation but, seeing that it did not reach the root of the 
evil, abandoned that movement to promote abolition. 
More prominent than these was Gerrit Smith of Peter- 
boro, New York, son of an ex-slaveholder. He too, had 
at first restricted his efforts at uplifting the Negroes to 
what could be effected through the colonization society. 
Becoming more interested in the behalf of the Negroes and 
also developing in his mind anti-land monopolist tendencies, 
he devised the scheme of improving their condition by 


186 The Negro In Our History 

transplanting them from the city to small farms in the 
country. He therefore addressed a letter to Charles B. Ray, 
Dr. J. McCune Smith and Theodore S. Wright, prominent 
Negroes of New York City, asking them to designate a num- 
Gerrit Smith, her of Negroes whom he might thus colonize 
on his lands in certain counties in southeastern New York. 
This list was accordingly given and the enterprise under 
taken, but because of the infelicity of the soil and the lack 
of initiative on the part of the Negroes, it failed. 

The more intense the abolition agitation grew, however, 
the more sectional the movement became. Backward as the 
institution of slavery seemed, the South became more and 
more attached to it and would not countenance any attack 
The South on it. Not only was the old-time abolitionist 
proslavery. in Danger there after 1840, but the ordinary 
observer who suggested moral suasion held his social posi 
tion by precarious tenure. Cassius M. Clay was driven out 
of Lexington, Kentucky, by proslavery citizens who could 
not tolerate the antislavery sentiments expressed in his 
The True American. Upon receiving some copies of the 
Emancipator, which he loaned to white friends while in 
Washington, Dr. Reuben Crandall of New York was ar 
rested and imprisoned on the charge of inciting a riot 
among the slaves but, after waiting trial eight months in 
jail, he was declared not guilty. Not knowing the temper 
of the South, an English traveling bookseller was whipped 
and driven out of Petersburg, Virginia, in 1832, because 
he dared to say at the time of the Nat Turner insurrection 
excitement that the blacks as men were entitled to their 
freedom and should be emancipated. Amos Dresser, a 
student of Lane Seminary and of Oberlin College, was 
whipped and expelled from the State of Tennessee because, 
while selling books imthat State, he had a copy of the Eman 
cipator wrapped around a Bible left in a Nashville hotel. 

Abolition in the South, therefore, ceased to be openly 

Further Protest 187 

agitated. The radicalism of Garrison tended to solidify 
the South against the struggle for free institutions. His 
advice to Negroes to educate their children, to build up 
their own trades, aid the fugitives, and to Abolition 
qualify as voters, stirred up the South; for quelled in 
there it was believed that if both races were fc e { >outlL 
free, one would have to be driven out by the other or ex 
terminated. Southerners caused alarm by the false rumor 
that the abolitionists advocated the amalgamation of the 
races, although Jay did not think that white men would 
have to select black wives and John Rankin disclaimed any 
such desire for miscegenation, while Channing thought we 
have no right to resist it and it is not unnatural. South 
erners were successful, too, in promoting their cause by 
raising the complaint of the circulation of incendiary pub 
lications portraying by pictures, cuts and drawings, the 
cruelties of slavery to acquaint the bondmen with the awful 
state to which they were reduced. These publications, 
however, because of the crass ignorance in which most 
Negroes were kept, as a rule, never reached them. With 
the exception of a few like Samuel Green, a free Negro, in 
Maryland, who was sent to the Maryland penitentiary for 
having in his home a copy of Uncle Tom s Cabin, there were 
not many instances of Negroes making use of these publi 

Moderate abolitionists in the South thereafter either 
abandoned their plan or cooperated with the colonizationists 
in seeking an opportunity for the national development 
of the Negro abroad. Radical abolitionists Martyrdom of 
either left for the North or remained in the abolitionists. 
South to entice Negroes to escape from their masters by 
way of the Underground Railroad. As this was a rather 
dangerous risk in the South where such was heavily penal 
ized, many of these persons almost suffered martyrdom in 
behalf of the fugitives. Jonathan Walker was branded 

188 The Negro In Our History 

with a hot iron for aiding the escape of a slave. In 1841 
Thompson, Burr and Burke, abolitionists from Illinois, 
were sentenced to serve a term in the Missouri penitentiary 
for persuading slaves to escape from the town of Palmyra. 
In 1844 L. W. Paine, a Rhode Island machinist working in 
Georgia, was thus imprisoned six years for the same offense. 
John L. Brown was, in 1846, condemned to be hanged for 
aiding 1 fugitives, but the sentence was commuted to a whip 
ping. Daniel Drayton, captain of a vessel upon which he 
permitted seventy-seven slaves to escape from their masters 
in the District of Columbia, lost his health while he was 
being almost starved there in confinement in an unsanitary 
prison cell. Another of these sympathizers, Delia Webster, 
a young lady from Vermont, teaching in Kentucky to find 
an opportunity for thus aiding fugitives, was sent to the 
penitentiary for two years. Calvin N. Fairbank, her ac 
complice, was sentenced to serve a term of fifteen years 
in the State prison. When pardoned by Governor John J. 
Crittenden, he immediately resumed his work in defiance of 
law and public opinion, and in 1852 was imprisoned the 
second time for fifteen years. He was not released until 
1864, when the sympathetic Acting Governor Richard T. 
Jacobs, taking advantage of the absence of Governor Bram- 
lette, pardoned Fairbank. Charles T. Torrey, a graduate 
of Yale and Andover Theological Seminary, went to An 
napolis to report a slaveholders convention, for which he 
was arrested and required to give bond for his good be 
havior. Some years later, upon being charged with having 
assisted a slave in escaping from his master, Torrey was 
convicted and imprisoned in a Maryland penitentiary, in 
which he died. 

Exactly what the abolitionists accomplished is difficult 
to estimate. Some are of the opinion that the radicals 
did the cause of emancipation more harm than good. Few 
white men of that day felt that the slaves could be in- 

Further Protest 





190 The Negro In Our History 

stantly emancipated. Most advocates of freedom had 
thought of gradual methods, and the radical reformers who 
stirred up the whole country with the idea of immediate 
Achievements abolition set the conservatives against eman- 
of the ^ cipation. The agitation itself, however, was 
hopeful. It showed that the country had de 
veloped a feeling of nationalism. A man living in Boston 
had begun to think that to some extent he was responsible 
for an evil obtaining in South Carolina. Leaders of thought 
were no longer content to leave it to the various States to 
decide for themselves whether or not an evil should be 
tolerated within their limits. Slavery had become so en 
grafted upon the country as to require national attention 
and national treatment. It resulted, therefore, in inciting a 
large number of antislavery people to greater activity and 
enabled the abolition societies to unify their efforts through 
out the North by organizing and stimulating local bodies, all 
of which helped to make possible the destruction of slavery. 
In the beginning their struggle was a hard one, but they 
had, after 1836, gained considerable ground. In the first 
Radical place, the North did not take seriously the 

abolition. agitation for the abolition of slavery in a sec 
tion closely connected with its financial and manufacturing 
centers. Others, who had no such interests, moreover, re 
garded the abolition agitation as a direct attack on the 
Union, in that the provision for the continuance of slavery 
in the Constitution was attacked ; and citizens in Southern 
States, considering these attacks as intended to disturb the 
peace in their commonwealths, declared that it furnished 
sufficient ground for withdrawal from the Union. In sev 
eral of the Northern States, therefore, legislation was pro 
posed to penalize discussions "calculated to excite insurrec 
tion among the slaves," as an offense against the peace of 
the State. Some undertook to brand the efforts of the aboli 
tionists as acts of sedition. As the abolitionists made good 

Further Protest 191 

their right of free speech, however, they were not ham 
pered in the North by such laws. 

As it was therefore necessary for the opponents of the 
abolitionists to express themselves in some other way, they 
resorted to mob violence. During the years from 1834 to 
1836 about twenty-five or thirty efforts were made to break 
up abolition meetings. There was an anti- Antiaboli- 
abolition riot at Clinton Hall in New York in tion riots - 
1833. Then followed a number of riots, culminating in 
the destruction of the property of the abolitionists in 1834, 
when the same sort of violence broke out in Utica, New 
York. When George Thompson, the experienced spokes 
man of the abolitionists in England, came to this country 
to further the cause, and had himself advertised to speak 
in Boston, the so-called friends of the Union organized a 
mob, but Thompson, having had notice as to what they 
hoped to do, failed to appear. William Lloyd Garrison, 
who had the courage to attend, found himself in the midst 
of a riotous crowd whom the mayor, despite his efforts, 
could not control. When the mayor made known his in 
ability to control the mob, the crowd ran Garrison down, 
put a rope around his body and pulled him through the 
streets of Boston. "The man," said an observer, "walked 
with head erect, flashing eyes, like a martyr going to the 
stake, full of faith and manly hope. To save his life, the 
mayor sent Garrison to the Charles Street jail, where he 
was with some difficulty rescued from the mob. 

In Pennsylvania, in which the large city of Philadelphia 
offered many reasons for close commercial attachment to 
the South, the cause of abolition had much opposition, de 
spite the healthy antislavery sentiment among the Quak 
ers. As the city of Philadelphia was being Disorder in 
rapidly filled up at this time with Germans Pennsylvania, 
and Scotch-Irish, who observed the prosperity of migrating 
freedmen with a covetous eye, these business men could by 

192 The Negro In Our History 

a very little encouragement to the disorderly crowd bring 
about a riot, especially so when the city was very poorly 
policed. A mob disgraced the city in 1834 by beating up 
a number of Negroes and damaging fifty-four houses. It 
was somewhat difficult thereafter to find a place for abo 
lition meetings. Negro churches closed their doors to these 
agitators, not because they could not appreciate the impetus 
the abolitionists gave the cause of freedom, but, knowing 
that any building in which an abolition meeting was held 
might be burned, the Negroes had to exercise precaution. 
To solve this problem, the abolitionists constructed a build 
ing of their own, known as Pennsylvania Hall, but when it 
was noised abroad that Garrison and other abolitionists had 
addressed a meeting there, on May 16, 1838, there was 
formed a mob which broke open the doors, set fire to the 
building, and prevented the authorities from extinguishing 
the flames. Pittsburgh had such an outbreak the following 

In the western part of the United States, where the abo 
litionists were equally bold, the same sort of riotous con 
dition obtained. In 1836 a mob, long since enraged because 
Riots In of the advocacy of abolition in the Philanthro- 

the West. pist, edited by James G. Birney, destroyed his 
office and made desperate efforts to take his life. In Alton, 
Illinois, the place in which Elijah P. Lovejoy had sought 
refuge for his abolition efforts, when he had been forced to 
leave St. Louis for criticizing the burning of a Negro at 
the stake, the same violence broke out. After his press had 
been twice destroyed, his building was attacked by a mob 
on November 7, 1837. He returned their fire but, on wait 
ing patiently on the outside for the exit of Lovejoy some 
time thereafter, the mob shot him dead. The jury ap 
pointed to inquire into the guilt of the offenders required 
only ten minutes to bring in a verdict of not guilty. 

Instead of preventing the rise of abolition, as was 

Further Protest 


expected, these efforts rather tended to increase the senti 
ment in the North against slavery. In some of the State 
legislatures there began to appear a number of antislavery 
members, and very soon even in Congress. Results of 
John P. Hale first took a stand against slavery Tiots - 
in the Senate. In 1838 there came to Congress the down 
right abolitionist, Joshua R. Giddings of the Western Re 
serve. William Slade of 
Vermont, an antislavery 
man, was sent to that body 
in 1840. There appeared, 
too, Thomas Morris, 
a United States Senator 
from Ohio, who rendered 
the cause much assistance. 
The abolitionists then had 
the opportunity to gain na 
tional recognition as a 
body primarily interested 
in promoting the moral 
life and atmosphere of the 
country. But they were 
far apart in their method 
of procedure, and radical 
utterances denouncing the 
Constitution as a proslav- 
ery document, while others 
argued that it was antislavery, did their cause unusual 

Salmon P. Chase insisted that the Constitution is an anti- 
slavery document, making the institution a black forgery. 
Replying to the arguments of the proslavery R adical 
element that slavery was maintained by the leaders 
Federal Constitution, some others, although increased - 
not advocates of instant abolition, insisted that a higher 


194 The Negro In Our History 

law than the Constitution protested against the action of 
Congress on this point. According to the law of human 
nature "no greater crime against human beings can be 
committed than to make him a slave. While Garrison, in 
1835, called God to witness that the abolitionists were not 
hostile to the Constitution 4 of the United States, in 1843 
he declared "that the compact which exis.ts between the 
North and the South is a covenant with death and an 
agreement with Hell, involving both parties in atrocious 
criminality, and should be immediately annulled." There 
still remained milder abolitionists like. William Jay and 
Channing, who disavowed the extreme theory. The cause 
of abolition, however, continued to suffer, for it had not 
only failed to interest a majority of the people in the North 
but had furnished sufficient radicalism upon which the pro- 
slavery spokesmen could stir up the country with threats 
of disunion, and terrorize the gradual emancipationists in 
the South. 

4 See the appeal of a Southern matron in the Appendix. 



DURING these years, important constitutional questions 
grew out of the encroachment of slavery and its haughty 
pretension to national precedence. The abolitionists had, 
by 1830, become unusually aggressive and were organizing 
throughout the country to make a bold at- The right of 
tack on the institution. They were then petition, 
presenting to the State legislatures and Congress various 
petitions asking, among other things, for the abolition of 
slavery in the District of Columbia. These petitions at first 
were received and then refused favorabje consideration. 
They had in the course of time been more easily disposed 
of by merely being referred to a committee which permitted 
them to die a natural death. Upon the occasion, however, 
of a petition of John Quincy Adams, long known as the 
only spokesman in behalf of free speech in Congress, the 
House voted to refuse such petitioners a hearing. This 
implied that a reasonable portion of the citizens of the 
United States were denied the right of petition j hn Quincy 
guaranteed by the Constitution of the United Adams. 
States. 1 Adams contended that these petitions must be 
received, heard, and referred to a committee, but when, he 

i John W. Burgess, Middle Period, Chs. IV, X, XI, XIII, XVIII, 
XX; J. B. McMaster, History of the United States, VIII, pp. 473- 
521, 438-512; James Schouler, History of the United States, V, 389- 
433; T. C. Smith, Parties and Slavery, passim; James F. Rhodes, 
History of the United States, III, IV, V, VI; William MacDonald, 
Select Statutes I, 343, 365-372, 385-300, 397-454; II, 35-38, 42-43, 113; 
A. B. Hart, American History Told by Contemporaries, III, 574-655; 
IV, 122-192. 



The Negro In Our History 

insisted that there should be a report from the committee 
and a vote upon that report it looked too much like an 
insult from the antislavery party. He was, therefore, cen 
sured by the proslavery element in the House. 2 

It is well to keep in mind, however, that Adams was 
not an antislavery man. His career had shown proslavery 
tendencies. 3 In the Senate, in 1807, when the prohibition of 
The record the slave trade was brought before that body, 
of Adams. j^ V oted against the measure. As a member 
of the mission negotiating the treaty with Great Britain, 

by which the War of 1812 
was closed, he demanded 
compensation for slaves 
who had been carried 
away from their masters 
by the British Army. 
During his incumbency as 
Secretary of State he was 
unfriendly to the proposal 
of Great Britain for a 
slave trade treaty in the 
interest of the Africans, 
and as President he mani 
fested no particular inter 
est in the bondmen. 
Throughout his struggle 
for the right of petition in Congress, therefore, he was in 
terested, not in the work of abolitionists but in defending 
the right of the people of his section to free speech. 

"When the House, in 1835, tabled an antislavery petition 
presented by John Quincy Adams, Henry A. Wise of Vir- 

2 John W. Burgess, The Middle Period; A. B. Hart, Slavery and 
Abolition; and Herman von Hoist, Constitutional and Political His 
tory of the United States. 

3 See the speech of John Quincy Adams quoted in the Appendix. 

pion of free speech 

Slavery and the Constitution 197 

ginia took occasion to remark: "Sir, slavery interwoven 
with our very political institution is guaranteed by our Con 
stitution, and its consequences must be borne Henry A. 
by our northern brethren as resulting from Wise, 
our system of government, and they cannot attack the 
institution of slavery without attacking the institutions of 
the country, our safety and welfare." In December of 
that same year Slade of Vermont took occasion to remark 
that as a constitutional right an abolition petition should 
be printed, and that Congress had power to prohibit slavery 
in the District of Columbia. He believed, moreover, that 
the progress of abolition must be necessary to preserve the 
balance of the situation or, rather, to restore it. When a 
few days later two other such petitions were presented by 
Morris of Ohio and Buchanan of Pennsylvania, John C. 
Calhoun declared such a memorial "a foul slander on 
nearly one-half of the States of the Union," and urged 
"that a stop be put to that agitation which had prevailed 
in so large a section of the country and which, unless 
checked, would endanger the extension of the Union. Con 
gress did not grant the desire of John C. Calhoun, but did 
vote to reject the prayer of the petition. 

Southern members immediately thereafter secured a spe 
cial "gag rule" that all petitions, memorials, resolutions, 
propositions or papers relating in any way or to any extent 
whatever to the subject of slavery or the "Gag Rule." 
abolition of slavery should without being either printed or 
referred be laid upon the table and that no further action 
whatever should be had thereon. The proslavery advocates 
had taken the advanced position that Congress could not 
legislate on slavery in the District of Columbia and that 
the wishes of the slave States bordering on the District of 
Columbia took precedence over the power of Congress to 
legislate for the District, although the Constitution provides 
that Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of 

198 The Negro In Our History 

speech or the rights of the people peaceably to assemble or 
to petition the government for the redress of grievances. 
Adams, therefore, held the resolution to be a direct viola 
tion of the Constitution of the United States and the rules 
of the House and of the rights of his constituents. 

A new stage in the discussion of the right of petition 
in Congress was reached when, in 1837, there were pre 
sented resolutions from Vermont legislature praying that 
A petition slavery be abolished in the District of Colum- 
from a State. ^ a j s j n accordance with the southern idea 
of State rights, no State could be questioned in presenting 
any petition to Congress, although citizens might be re 
strained therefrom, Rhett of South Carolina summoned to 
his support his southern coworkers to devise a plan for 
peaceably dissolving the Union. They finally agreed, how 
ever, to undertake the enactment of a law providing for a 
more successful "gag rule," which declared it "the solemn 
duty of the government to resist all attempts by one portion 
to use it as an instrument to attack the democratic institu- 
x- tions of another. 

At this time Henry Clay and Daniel Webster, two of 
the weakest men in this country, were dodging the slavery 
question, although they saw the encroachment of the slave 
power upon the rights guaranteed the individual in the 
Webster and Constitution. Henry Clay, who declared that 
O la y- he was not a friend of slavery, preferring 

rather freedom for all men, nevertheless considered the 
petitions for the abolition of slavery "a great practical in 
convenience and annoyance," from which he hoped the 
people in the North would desist. In 1830 Daniel Webster 
considered domestic slavery one of the greatest evils, both 
moral and political. In 1836 he felt that it was the duty 
of Congress to take care that the authority of this govern 
ment was not brought to bear upon slavery by any indirect 
interference. He later announced that as to slavery he 

Slavery and the Constitution 


Calhoun, the 
pro slavery 

would do nothing to favor or encourage its further exten 
sion. Yet with regard to abolition he felt that it had taken 
such strong hold on the consciences of men that, if it were 
coerced into silence, he knew nothing even in the Constitu 
tion or in the Union itself which would not be endangered 
by the explosion which might follow. Hoping to become 
president, he later tended to become neutral, and bartered 

his birthright by an un 
successful attempt t o 
swallow the Fugitive 
Slave Law of 1850. 

Growing bolder from 
year to year, the South 
during this 
period fin 
ally became 

solidly organized under 
the leadership of John 
C. Calhoun, who had de 
parted from his early 
position of nationalism 
to defend the institution 
of slavery. In 1836 he 
boldly declared that 
"Congress has no legiti- 
n^ate jurisdiction over 

the subject of slavery either in the District of Colum 
bia or elsewhere. " 4 He believed, that the abolitionists 
had no right to discuss slavery at all, that Congress should 
pass affirmative laws for the protection of slaveholders 
against abolition by mail and that the Northern States 
should be prohibited from engaging in the agitation. He 
insisted that "the conflicting elements would burst the 
Union asunder, powerful as are the links that hold it to- 


See Appendix for J. II. Gidd.ings s attack, on this policy. 


The Negro In Our History 


gether. Abolition and the Union cannot coexist ; come what 
will, should it cost every drop of blood and every cent of 
property, we must defend ourselves." 

As the State of Texas, developed under direction of pro- 
slavery men led by Samuel Austin and Samuel Houston, 
became an independent slaveholding section desiring an- 
The Texas nexation to the Union, Calhoun found for the 
question. South a safety valve in championing the de 
sirable policy of expansion. This extension of our territory 
, could not be easily de 
feated, although the pur 
pose was to secure slave 
territory. Joshua R. Gid- 
dings, the first militant 
abolition member of Con 
gress, however, showed in 
a speech attacking slav 
ery, in 1841, exactly how 
the admission of Texas 
would increase the power 
of the South and effect the 
economic history of the 
whole country. 5 

Many constitutional dif 
ficulties were encountered 
after some of the States 
had abolished slavery. The 
South continued to have trouble with fugitives escaping 
The return from its ports. It was always easy, moreover, 
of fugitives. f or a f ew s } aves to arrange with the Negro 
cooks and stewards on vessels to conceal them as cargo and 
deliver them to some agent of the Underground Railroad on 
arriving in the North. In 1837 the schooner Susan, sailing 
from Georgia, permitted a Negro stowaway to escape on 

6 See Giddings s speech in the Appendix. 


Slavery and the Constitution 





The Negro In Our History 

reaching a port in Maine. The State of Georgia preferred 
charges against the officers of the ship and undertook to take 
them into custody, but the Governor of Maine refused to 
honor the requisition on the grounds that they had left 
Georgia before they were charged with the crime. Three 

sailors coming into New 
York with the slave they 
helped to escape from Nor 
folk in 1839, were simi 
larly protected by Gover 
nor William H. Seward, 
who despised the institu 
tion of slavery. This 
caused a prolonged contro 
versy between the chief ex 
ecutives of the two States 
and the expression of much 
bitter feeling on both sides. 
Virginia finally passed a 
law requiring the inspec 
tion of all vessels bound 
for New York. Missis 
sippi, taking up her cause, 
proposed "to unite with 
other States in any measure of resistance or redress." 
Because of the disturbances resulting from the Negro 
insurrection in 1822, South Carolina passed certain Negro 
Seamen Acts" requiring all Negroes on vessels to go to jail 
Seamen on arriving in port and to remain there until 

Acts - their vessels set sail again. These acts were 

earnestly protested against by Northern States and by Eng 
land, all of which had constant commercial intercourse 
with South Carolina. The measures were relaxed with ref 
erence to England, but with respect to the Northern States 
they continued as law, Thinking that it would be advisable 


Slavery and the Constitution 203 

to make a test case of this legislation, antislavery members 
of the Massachusetts legislature sent Samuel Hoar to inter 
cede in behalf of a Negro thus deprived of his rights in that 
State. Upon arrival Hoar was notified that his life 
was in danger for the reason that he was an agent coming- 
in not as a citizen of the United States but as an emissary 
of a foreign government hostile to the domestic institutions 
and with the sole purpose of subverting its internal policy. 

The South undertook also to indict as criminals against 
the laws of the States persons who, although they did not 
come within the limits of the States, had by way of mail 
or message incited insurrection or aided slaves Attacks on 
to escape from their masters. William Lago, slavery, 
a free Negro, was thus indicted in Kentucky. The 
Supreme Court decided that the governor of the State 
had a moral right to surrender Lago, but that the Federal 
Government had no power to compel him to do so. Joseph 
P. Mahan, a Methodist minister of Brown County, Ohio, 
was indicted by a grand jury of Kentucky for having 
aided the escape of certain slaves. Upon receiving a requi 
sition from the Governor of Kentucky, the Governor of 
Ohio issued a warrant for the arrest of the minister. Not 
long after, however, the Governor of Ohio became con 
vinced that the warrant had been issued without authority 
because Mahan had never been in Kentucky. The grand 
jury of Tuscaloosa County thus indicted R. G. Williams of 
New York in 1835, and the chief executive called upon Gov 
ernor Marcy of New York to surrender him. The requi 
sition was refused for the reason that Marcy could not see 
how a man could be guilty of a crime in Alabama when he 
had never been there. Rewards were offered for abolition 
ists like Arthur Tappan, and the State of Georgia appro 
priated $5,000 as a reward for William Lloyd Garrison, the 
editor of the Liberator. 

This same assumption of authority in the defense of 

The Negro In Our History 




Slavery and the Constitution 205 

slavery extended also to the search of the mails for incen 
diary matter sent by the abolitionists to slaves and their 
sympathizers in the South. Because of the Searching 
annoyance from which the South had suffered tne mails - 
therefrom, Calhoun introduced, in 1836, a bill providing 
that mail matter other than letters touching the subject 
of slavery should not be delivered in any State prohibiting 
the circulation of such matter. Congress, however, could 
not pass such a law, since many States had not prohibited 
the circulation of such matter. The matter was settled 
by a general search of the mails throughout the South, just 
as is done today in the time of war. 

There arose also the question as to what effect on the 
status of the slave would his removal to a free State have 
and if, according to the law of that State it worked his 
manumission, would he be free on his return Removal to 
to the slave State from which he went. In a free State. 
Massachusetts slavery was forbidden for any cause, whereas 
in Missouri and Louisiana it was held that a freedman vol 
untarily returning to his master reverted to slavery. In 
diana gave the master the right of transit with his slaves in 
that State. In Pennsylvania, however, it was not allowed. 
When John H. Wheeler of North Carolina passed through 
that State on his way to New York, from which he was to 
proceed to Nicaragua, Passmore Williamson informed 
Jane Johnson, the attending servant, that she was free 
under the laws of that State, and the courts upheld that 

During the darkest days of slavery when many of them 
escaped to the Northern States, however, in spite of senti 
ment to the contrary, masters hunted them down in the 
North, demanding of the local courts their Personal 
return to slavery. The local courts often re- Liberty Laws, 
fused to carry out these mandates, and certain Northern 
States passed personal liberty laws to impede these efforts 

206 The Negro In Our History 

by .granting alleged fugitives a trial by jury. In Vermont 
and New York local officials were deprived of jurisdiction 
in such cases, and State attorneys were required to act as 
legal advisers for Negroes thus accused. Ohio, however, 
egged on by the mob cruelly treating free Negroes migrating 
from the South to that State, enacted in 1839 a Fugitive 
Slave Law more drastic than the Federal measure of 1793. 
Some excitement was caused in 1837, however, when a 
Kentucky slave, Matilda, who, without being asked any 
questions, entered the service of James G. Birney at Cin 
cinnati, was claimed and surrendered as a fugitive. In 1840 
John Van Zandt was, despite the appeal to the Supreme 
Court by such valuable counsellors as Salmon P. Chase and 
William H. Seward, fined $1,200 because he rescued one of 
nine slaves who had escaped to the other side of the Ohio 

An epoch was reached in the execution of the Fugitive 
Slave Law, however, when Edward Prigg of Maryland un 
dertook to return from Pennsylvania the fugitive Margaret 
The Prigg Morgan. Because Prigg seized her without 
Case> first instituting proceedings in the courts of 

the State he was arrested for violating the Pennsylvania 
statute against kidnapping. Upon appealing to the United 
States Supreme Court, however, the opinion was given that 
the owner had a right to recover the slave but that the 
act of 1793 could not be construed as making its execution 
an obligation of the State officials. Following this decision 
John Shaw of Boston refused not long thereafter to grant 
a writ of habeas corpus in accordance with the State per 
sonal liberty law to remove Latimer, a fugitive, from cus- 
The Lattmer tody of the Federal authorities. There fol- 
Case lowed such a storm of protest, however, such 

an array of abolitionists against the authorities thus admin 
istering the law, that an observer of the trend of the times 
could easily see that feeling was running too high to calm 

Slavery and the Constitution 207 

the people of the North who were then openly resisting the 
execution of Federal law. The southern people bore 
it as a grievance, therefore, that the enemies of their basic 
institution could by the application of personal liberty laws 
deprive them of their property. They urged, therefore, 
the enactment of a more stringent measure which eventually 
culminated in the passage of the Fugitive Slave Law of 



SLAVERY became more troublesome for the United States 
at home when it involved the country in entanglements 
abroad. The British Government gradually emancipated 
International **& slaves in the colonies after 1833, and there 
entangle- was a tendency on the part of slaves and their 
sympathizers to seek refuge in those parts 
when carried on the high seas. For years very little effort 
had been made to stop the numerous violations of the slave 
trade, despite the fact that European governments had 
repeatedly called upon the United States to unite with them 
to abolish this traffic in men. When the ship Comet, in 1831, 
carrying slaves, and bound for the United States, was 
wrecked at the Bahamas, they were brought ashore and 
set free on the ground that the British Government did not 
recognize slavery on the high seas. Similar instances oc 
curred in the case of the Encomium in 1835, and the Enter 
prise and the Hermosa in 1840. The United States Gov 
ernment promptly demanded an indemnity, contending 
Slavery on that the accidental presence of the vessels in 
the high seas. British waters did not interfere with the 
relation of master and slave ; but, doubtless for the reason 
that emancipation was not at that time completed in the 
West Indies, Great Britain granted the United States, in 
1840, an indemnity of $115,000 for the slaves of the Comet 
and Encomium, but nothing was granted for the others. 


The Irrepressible Conflict 


The only consolation our government received was to declare 
it a violation of international law for which no redress 
could be obtained. 

There took place, moreover, a number of mutinies of 
slaves on the high seas, which, the proslavery element be 
lieved, required intervention on the part of the United 
States. One of the most significant of these L Amistad. 
cases was that of the Amistad. There were on board the 
schooner fifty-four Negroes who were being carried coast 
wise from Havana to Neu- 
vitas on the island of Cuba 
in 1839. Under the leader 
ship of the African, Joseph 
Cinque, the Negroes mur 
dered the passengers and 
the crew with the excep 
tion of two Spaniards 
spared to steer the vessel 
toward freedom. After 
roaming on the high seas 
a few days, the vessel came 
ashore for water and pro 
visions at Culloden Point 
on the east end of Long 
Island, and was espied and 
taken possession of a short 

while thereafter by Cap- 

, . ^ ^ n, ,, TT .. , JOSEPH CINQUE 

tarn Gedney of the United 

States Navy. Joseph Cinque, the leader, undertook to es 
cape, but finally yielded. The captives were then brought 
before the United States Circuit Court in Connecticut, pre 
sided over by Andrew T. Judson. As the proceedings 
lasted for some months, Cinque and his companions were 
turned over to certain abolition teachers, who so thoroughly 
grounded him in the fundamentals of education that he 


The Negro In Our History 

developed into a man of considerable intelligence, show 
ing natural ability as an orator. The outcome of the case 
was that although Van Buren was ready to remand them, 
the Supreme Court on appeal decided that the Negroes 
being free when they left Havana were violating no law 
in killing those trying to enslave them. They were there 
fore set free. 

The mutiny of the slaves on the Creole, en route from 
Richmond to New Orleans, in 1841, gave rise to another 
Congressional inquiry in which 
the right of the United States to 
exercise authority over slaves on 
the high seas was questioned. 
Under the leadership of Madison 
Washington, who had made his 
The Creole escape from slavery 
Case. j n Yi r gi n i a to Can 

ada, but on returning to rescue 
his wife had been captured and 
sent South for sale, one hundred 
and thirty-four slaves overpow 
ered the officers of the vessel, 
killed one, and directed the ship 

to the British port Nassau, where CHARLES SUMNER a fear 
less advocate of democracy 
they were held to await instruc 
tions from the British government. When proslavery men 
in Congress sought to have these Negroes returned to their 
masters on the ground that they were legally held at the 
time of their departure, Charles Sumner * insisted that the 
slaves became free when taken, by the voluntary action of 
their owners, beyond the jurisdiction of the slave States. 
On the other hand, Daniel Webster, then Secretary of State, 
contended that inasmuch as slaves were recognized as prop 
erty by the Constitution of the United States, where slavery 

1 See Appendix for Simmer s ideas. 

The Irrepressible Conflict 211 

existed, their presence on the high seas did not effect a 
change in their status. The matter between Great Britain 
was drawn out into ten years of negotiations and was finally 
settled in 1853 by arbitration with the provision that the 
British Government should pay an indemnity of $110,000 
for having permitted these Negroes to go free. 

To combat this view Joshua R. Giddings, an antislavery 
member of Congress, offered in connection with this case in 
1842 resolutions to the effect that * slavery, being an abridg 
ment of the natural rights of man, can exist only by force 
or positive municipal law." 2 Botts of Vir- Giddings 
ginia thereupon secured the adoption of a res- Resolution, 
olution to the effect that "this House hold the conduct of 
said member altogether unwarranted and unwarrantable, 
and deserving the severe condemnation of the people of this 
country and of this body in particular." Giddings was, 

2 Giddings resolutions were: 

1. Resolved, That, prior to the adoption of our Federal Consti 
tution each of the several States composing this Union exercised full 
and exclusive jurisdiction over the subject of slavery within its own 
territory, and possessed full power to continue or abolish it at 

2. Resolved, That, by adopting the Constitution, no part of the 
aforesaid powers were delegated to the Federal Government, but were 
reserved by and still pertain to each of the several States. 

3. Resolved, That, by the 8th section of the 1st article of the 
Constitution, each of the several States surrendered to the Federal 
Government all jurisdiction over the subjects of commerce and 
navigation upon the high seas. 

4. Resolved, That Slavery, being an abridgement of the natural 
right of man, can exist only by force of positive municipal law, and 
is necessarily confined to the territorial jurisdiction of the power 
creating it. 

5. Resolved, That when a ship belonging to the citizens of any 
State enters upon the high seas, the persons on board cease to be 
subject to the slave laws of sucli State, and therefore, are governed 
in their relations to each other by, and are amenable to, the laws 
of the United States. 

6. Resolved, That when the brig Creole, on her late passage for 
New Orleans, left the territorial jurisdiction of Virginia, the slave 
laws of that State ceased to have jurisdiction over the persons on 

212 The Negro In Our History 

therefore, twice censured by the proslavery Congress. To 
show the attachment of his district to free institutions, 
however, he resigned and appealed to his constituents in 
the Western Reserve, who immediately returned him that 
he might introduce these resolutions again. 

The interpretation of the constitution was again appealed 
to when, in the development of the proslavery policy which 
dominated this country up to the Civil War, the South 
The Wilmot actually forced the country into a struggle 
Proviso. W j t j 1 ]y[ ex i co ^ o acquire territory for the ex 

tension of slavery. A rather serious question arose when 
an act appropriating money for the purchase of territory 
from Mexico was blocked by David Wilmot s amendment 
providing that in the territory to be thus acquired slavery 
should be forever prohibited. This amendment caused much 
trouble years thereafter; for, introduced from session to 

board said brig, and such persons became amenable only to the laws 
of the United States. 

7. Resolved, That the persons on board the said ship, in re 
suming their natural rights of personal liberty, violated no law of 
the United States, and are incompatible with our national honor. 

8. Resolved, That all attempts to regain possession of or to re- 
enslave said persons are unauthorized by the Constitution or laws 
of the United States, and are incompatible with our national honor. 

9. Resolved, That, all attempts to exert our national influence 
in favor of the coastwise slave trade, or to place this nation in the 
attitude of maintaining a "commerce in human beings," are sub 
versive of the rights and injurious to the feelings of the free States, 
are unauthorized by the Constitution, and prejudicial to our national 

See Text of the resolutions in House Journal, 27th Con., 2d Sess. ; 
for the resolution of censure, ib., p. 580. For the discussions see the 
Cong. Globe, or Benton s Abridgment, XIV. The diplomatic corre 
spondence regarding the Creole is in the House Exec. Doc. 2, 27th 
Cong., 3d Sess., pp. 114-123, and Senate Doc. 1, pp. 116-125. See also 
von Hoist s United States, II, 479-486; J. Q. Adams s Memoirs, .XI, 
113-115; Wilson s Rise and Fall of the Slave Power, I, Chap. 31; 
Benton s Thirty Years View, II, Chap. 98. 

The work of this statesman is treated in Byron R. Long s 
Joshua R. Giddings, A Champion of Political Freedom and H 
George W. Julians Life of Joshua R. Giddings. See also J. B 
Moore s International Arbitrations, I, 417. 

The Irrepressible Conflict 213 

session, it became the nemesis of the proslavery party in 
quest of new territory. The proviso evoked from the pro- 
slavery advocates the claim that Congress had no right to 
legislate on this question and that the question of slavery 
should be decided by those persons who would settle in 
the said territory. 

About the year 1850, when the antislavery agitation was 
at its height and the various laws of interest to the many 
contending elements emerged in the form of the Omnibus 
Bill, several constitutional questions of importance were 
raised. There came up the question of the The crisis 
admission of California, the paying of certain of 185 - 
Texas claims, the organization of territory acquired from 
Mexico, the abolition of the slave trade in the District of 
Columbia, and the provision for a more effective fugitive 
slave law. The friends of slavery objected to having the 
State of California admitted without passing through the 
territorial probation period, and did not agree with Henry 
Clay, who contended that slavery in that State illegally 
existed. They believed that slavery existed everywhere 
unless it had been positively prohibited by law. Many 
northerners objected to paying claims incurred by the 
acquisition of slave territory and were not disposed to 
hurry up with the organization of slave States to be formed 
therefrom. 3 As to the prohibition of slavery in the District 
of Columbia, the southerners were still of the opinion that 
the Constitution had not given Congress any power to legis 
late regarding slavery. On the other hand, the friends of 
freedom were of the opinion that the proposed fugitive slave 
law intended to impress into the service of slave-catching 
men who had no inclination to perform such a task, that it 
interfered with a man s rights as a citizen, and that it was 
unconstitutional because it did not guarantee the suspects 
any right of trial by jury and did not permit a fugitive to 

s This is well expressed by Giddings s speech in the Appendix. 


The Negro In Our History 

testify in his own behalf. In the midst of so many conflict 
ing efforts to bring about a compromise between two mili 
tant sections, far-sighted men like William H. Seward 4 and 
Henry Ward Beecher saw no hope for peace in the Omnibus 

A more interesting constitutional question arose some 
years later when out of 
the territory in the West 
it was proposed to organize 
Kansas and Nebraska with 
out regard to slavery. Ste 
phen A. Douglas, the cham 
pion of this movement, 
seemed to stultify him- 

The Kansas- self in trvin g 
Nebraska to harmonize 
Question. hig theory rf 

squatter sovereignty with 
that of the freedom of the 
people in determining for 
themselves how the new 
commonwealth should come 
into the Union. How 
Douglas could make it pos- 


a champion 

sible for a man to take his 
slaves wherever he would 

and still hold them as goods and chattels, while at the same 
time the law would guarantee to the people in a new com 
monwealth when framing the Constitution the right to de 
cide for themselves whether or not the State should be 
free, was never satisfactorily explained to the increasing 
number of antislavery men. 

The most formidable of all of these protagonists, how 
ever, was not among the first to appear. He was a back- 

4 See Appendix for Seward s Higher Law. 

The Irrepressible Conflict 215 

woodsman born in Kentucky and developed to manhood in 
Indiana and Illinois. As a rail-splitter he could understand 
the hardships entailed upon those compelled Lincoln on 
to engage in drudgery. When a young man slavery, 
he went on a flat boat on a trading trip to New Orleans. On 
the market square he saw human beings auctioned off like 
cattle, and being deeply impressed with the evil thereof he 
said to himself that if he ever had a chance to strike slavery 
he would strike it and would strike it hard. Some years 
later, when Elijah Lovejoy was killed at Alton, Illinois, by 
the proslavery leaders because of his diatribes hurled at 
the bold defenders of that institution, the legislature of 
the State passed a resolution which seemingly condoned 
that murder. Thereupon this representative joined with 
Daniel Stone in a protest to the effect that "they believed 
that the institution of slavery is founded on both injustice 
and bad policy. This man was Abraham Lincoln. 5 

Against all temporizing and compromising efforts to 
placate the mad proslavery advocates, Lincoln persistently 
warned his fellow-countrymen. He early saw that the 
country had by its continuation of the policies of the pro- 
slavery party decided upon a fatal course of winking at a 
terrible evil. Under the operation of that policy, said he, 
1 that agitation has not only not ceased, but has constantly 
augmented. In my opinion, it will not cease until a crisis 
shall have been reached and passed. A house divided 
against itself cannot stand. I believe this government 
cannot endure permanently half slave and half free. I do 
not expect the Union to be dissolved I do not expect the 
house to fall but I do expect it will cease to be divided. 
It will become all one thing, or all the other. Either the 
opponents of slavery will arrest the further spread of it, 
and place it where the public mind shall rest in the belief 
that it is in the course of ultimate extinction ; or its advo- 

s See Lincoln s speech in the Appendix. 

216 The Negro In Our History 

cates will push it forward till it shall become alike lawful 
in all the States, old as well as new, North as well as 
South." 6 

The culmination of the proslavery discussion was the 
Dred Scott decision. This was the case of a Negro who had 
been taken from the slave States into free territory a second 
The Dred Scott time, when he instituted proceedings to ob- 
Decision. tain his f ree d om . The case passed through 

the local and higher courts and finally came before the 
Supreme Court of the United States, which decided that at 
that time, when the Constitution of the United States was 
adopted, Negroes were not regarded as citizens of this 
country and they could not, therefore, sue as such in the 
United States courts. That tribunal then had no jurisdic 
tion in such a case and it was dismissed. This was to say 
that the Negro, so far as the United States Government 
was concerned, had no rights that the white man should 
respect, and that although certain sections of the country by 
regulations were generally free, any part of the country 
might become slave, should persons owning Negroes choose 
to settle therein. Slavery was therefore national, while 
freedom was sectional. 

Against this interpretation of the Constitution to justify 
such encroachment upon the rights of the individual, the 
friends of freedom persistently protested. Wendell Phil- 
Increasing Hps, the stanch advocate of liberty, equality, 
opposition. an( j fraternity, saw in the constitution thus 
interpreted such an inhuman law that he refused to seek 
election to Congress because he could not conscientiously 
take the oath to support it. William Henry Seward, then 
coming forward as the spokesman of those who dared to 
engage in the battle for the rights of citizens under the 
constitution, accepted the challenge in his Impending 

e Abraham Lincoln, Speeches and Debates (New York, 1907), p. 36. 

The Irrepressible Conflict 217 

Crisis and Irrepressible Conflict. 7 Salmon P. Chase and 
Charles Sumner, though not at first militant abolitionists, 
had reached the conclusion that slavery would have to 
yield ground to free soil, free speech and free men. 

The slavery debate then ceased to be a constitutional ques 
tion and became largely political. The organization of the 
Republican Party in 1854, and its all but successful cam 
paign in 1856 with John C. Fremont on the slavery in 
platform of prohibiting the extension of slav- P oli tics. 
ery, made this question the dominant thought of most 
forward-looking men. Here we see the agitation for the 
rights of man connecting opportunely with modern eco 
nomic movements to reduce slave labor to the point of a 
death struggle with free labor. Although aware of the fact 
that the civilized world had proscribed slavery, the South 
was willing to remain in a primitive state to retain it. The 
North was determined not to yield any more ground to an 
institution in which it had no interest and against which 
it had many reasons to be opposed. Then followed the 
popularization of Uncle Tom s Cabin, the famous debates 
of Lincoln and Douglas, the division of the truncated Demo 
cratic Party, the accession of northern liberals to the ranks 
of the Republicans, and the triumph of the Republican 
Party in 1860. 

The southern States, believing that their last chance to 
maintain slavery in the Union had passed, thereupon se 
ceded to establish a confederate government in keeping 
with their institutions. South Carolina took ij,^ e jj^st 
such action December 20, 1860, and before stand of the 
Lincoln had been inaugurated the following out * 
March all of the cotton States had followed her example. 
Was secession constitutional? James Buchanan, the weak 
executive then finishing his term as President, said that 

7 See Appendix for Seward s thought on the crisis. 


The Negro In Our History 

these commonwealths had no right to leave the Union, but 
he did not believe that he had any constitutional power to 
interfere with their going. This was the most critical 
period through which the Union had passed, and persons 
who had for some years observed the development of disin 
tegrating forces doubted that it would weather the storm. 
When the Federal Constitution was framed and adopted 


50 TO 75 PER CENT 



By permission of the United States Bureau of the Census 

few persons were conscious of the fact that the foundation 
for a durable union of the States had been laid. The very 
The nature of language of the Constitution itself indicates 
the Union. t h at a consolidation of the States ratifying 
that agreement was not clear in the minds of the framers. 
In the course of time, however, the country developed into 
a Union, the majority of the States taking the position that 
it could not be broken. Some States were in doubt as to 
whether a State could secede at the time of the agitation 

The Irrepressible Conflict 


of the Alien and Sedition Laws which culminated in the 
high ground taken by Virginia and Kentucky in their 
threatening resolutions. More strength for the Union was 
evidenced when New England, because of its dissatisfaction 
with the conduct of the War of 1812, felt disposed to make 
an effort at secession. The Union sentiment was much more 
pronounced at the time of the nullification of the efforts of 
South Carolina in 1833, indicating, as Benjamin F. Wade 

of Ohio boldly asserted, that 
there was little chance for a 
State to leave the Union of its 
own accord. 8 

In spite of this nationalistic 
attitude, however, the South had 
become so much attached to slav 
ery and the North so far re 
moved from it that this insti-, 
tution tended so to Threats of 
widen the breach secession, 
that to carry its point the South 
for three decades threatened 
the country with secession. Be 
fore the two participants in this 
contest lay the promising 1 West. 
Each was making an effort to in 
vade that domain to establish there States which would sup 
port their respective claims. As a free society expands 
much more rapidly than a slave community, the North eas 
ily outstripped the South and in seeking an advantage by 
preventing the expansion of slavery in the interest of free 
labor, it forced the South to the radical position of under 
taking secession. These threats were very much pro 
nounced during the ardent slavery debates of 1849 and 1850, 

defier of the Seces 

8 See Appendix for Wade s speech. 


The Negro In Our History 

leaving certain sores which the all-comprehending compro 
mise of 1850 failed to heal. And when the agitation had 
seemingly been all but settled by these arrangements, the 
matter broke out anew in the effort to provide a govern 
ment for Kansas and Ne 
braska and in the struggle 
there between the repre 
sentatives of the North and 
South. The bloodshed in 
Kansas was the beginning 
of the Civil War, and the 
raid of John Brown at 
Harpers Ferry in 1859 
was but another event of 
the same struggle. 9 Al 
though he overestimated 
the effect of his exploits 
he did drive home, how 
ever, the fact that a num 
ber of people in the North 
had thought so seriously 
about slavery as to en 
danger their lives in try 
ing to exterminate the institution. It made the country 
realize that something would have to be done to bring 
the matter to a conclusion, and the Civil War was the 
crowning event of this long-drawn-out movement. 


9 See the last words of John Brown in the Appendix. 



WHEN the war broke out, the President of the United 
States openly declared that it was not his purpose to inter 
fere with the institutions of the South, meaning of course, 
that he had no desire to attack slavery in those Evading 
commonwealths in which it existed. The slavery. 
South, on the other hand, anxious to win favor abroad and 
knowing how it would harm its cause in foreign countries 
to have it said that it had undertaken a war to promote 
slavery, declared its position one of self-defense to maintain 
its right to govern itself and to preserve its own peculiar 
institutions. Negroes, therefore, were not to be freed and 
of course were not to take a part in the war, as it was 
considered a struggle between white men. This does not 
mean, however, that Abraham Lincoln had lost sight of the 
fact that he had been elected by a party opposed to the 
extension of slavery, nor that he ceased to put forth efforts, 
whenever possible, to check the institution as he had for 
merly declared. After the war had been well begun and it 
was evident that such efforts as the peace convention could 
not succeed, Lincoln took up with the border States the 
question of setting the example of freeing the Negroes by a 
process of gradual emancipation. 1 

i J. K. Hosmer, The Appeal to Arms and his Outcome of the Civil 
War; J. W. Burgess, Civil War and the Constitution; James Ford 
Rhodes, History of the United States, Vol. Ill; J. B. McMaster, 
History of the United States, Vol. VIII, p. 473; James Schouler, 
History of the United States, VI, 1861-1865, passim; William Wells 
Brown, The Rising Son, 341-381; George W. Williams, History of 


The Negro In Our History 


The Negro In the Civil War 223 

Before the war had proceeded very far, however, the 
Negroes came up for serious consideration because of the 
many problems which developed out of the peculiar situ 
ation in which they were. In the first place, r^ jf egro 
there were in the North free Negroes who involved, 
were anxious to do their share in defeating the purposes of 
the Confederate States, knowing that the success of their 
cause meant the perpetuation of slavery. There were in 
the North, moreover, white men who were of the opinion 
that free Negroes should share a part of the burden entailed 
by waging the Civil War. Furthermore, as soon as the 
invading Union armies crossed the Mason and Dixon line 
into the South, disturbing the plantation system and driving 
the masters away from their homes, the Negroes were left 
behind to constitute a problem for the army. There arose 
the question as to what was the status of such Negroes. 
Nominally they were slaves, actually they were free, but 
there was no law to settle the question. A few slaves who 
had been taken over by the Union armies from persons in 
rebellion against the United States, were confiscated by 
virtue of the legislation providing for this disposition of 
such property of the Confederates. Yet there were Negroes 
who did not wait for the invading armies but, when their 
masters had gone to the front to defend the South, left 
their homes and made way to the Union camps. 2 

The first effort to deal with such slaves was made by 
General Butler at Fortress Monroe in 1861. Butler s 
Such slaves as escaped into his camp in flight contrabands, 
from their masters, he accepted as contrabands of war on 
the grounds that they had been employed in assisting the 

Negro Troops in the War of the Rebellion, passim; William MacDon- 
ald, Select Statutes of United States History, 34-39; and A. B. Hart, 
American History Told by Contemporaries, IV, 181-458. 

2 The best authority on the Civil War is James Ford Rhodes. See 
his History of the United States from the Compromise of 1850 to 
the Final Restoration of Home Rule in tTfe South; Volumes I-IV. 


The Negro In Our History 

Confederate armies and could be confiscated in the same 
sense that one would take over other supplies of the 
Confederates. Mu ch discussion was aroused by the action 
of General Butler, and there was doubt as to whether or not 
it would be supported by the President. This plan, how 
ever, was followed by General Wood, Butler s successor, 
and by General Banks when he was operating in New Or 
leans. General Halleck, while operating in the West, at first 


excluded slaves from the camps, as did also General Dix in 
Virginia. Some generals, like General McCook and General 
Johnson, permitted slave hunters to come into their lines 
and reclaim their fugitive slaves. Later, however, General 
Halleck seems to have receded from his early position. 
General Grant refused to give permits to those seeking to 
recapture the Negroes who had escaped from their former 
masters, and used the blacks at such labor as the building 
of roads and fortifications, very much as they were first 

The Negro In the Civil War 225 


used by General Butler. This anticipated a policy which 
was later followed by the United States Army. 3 

In the course of time, however, the national government 
saw the necessity of treating the Negro ques- 
tion more seriously. It was evident that if 
the South continued to use the Negro slaves 
in building fortifications and roads and bridges and, in 
fact, to do practically all ^ _ __ 
of the labor required in 
the army, it was incum 
bent upon the Union arm 
ies operating in the South 
to do likewise. Lincoln, 
therefore, soon accepted the 
policy of using the slaves 
in this capacity, receding 
from his former position 
of thinking that should the 
slaves be given any en 
couragement to leave their 
homes they might start a 
servile insurrection, and in 
promoting such he would 
weaken himself in his hold 
on the North. 

At first these Negroes did 
not find their life a pleasant one. They were suddenly 
thrown among strange men from the North, who. had 
never had much dealing with the Negroes and whose first 
impression of them was not favorable. Arriv- The Negro in 
ing among these soldiers, naked, hungry, and * ne camps. 
often diseased moreover, lacking the initiative to provide 

a G. W. Williams, History of the Negro Troops in the War of the 
Rebellion, passim; William Wells Brown, The Rising Son; and John 
Eaton, Grant, Lincoln, and the Freedmen. 


226 The Negro In Our History 

for themselves what the average freeman was expected to 
do, they presented a piteous spectacle which baffled the skill 
of the army. The refugees were finally organized under 
directions sent out from headquarters of the army, and 
placed in charge of a superintendent having under him 
sufficient assistants to relieve most of the cases of dis 
tress and to make some use of the able-bodied Negroes. 

Most of these refugees were sent to Washington, Alex 
andria, Fortress Monroe, Hampton, Craney Island, York- 
town, Suffolk, Portsmouth, Port Royal, South Carolina, 
and certain camps of the West near Memphis. At one time, 
in the camp at Arlington, just across from Washington, 
there were as many as 30,000 Negroes. This number in 
creased to almost 100,000 in the various camps near Wash 
ington, in the proportion that the war advanced and the 
territory of the Confederates became overrun by the invad 
ing Union armies. 4 It was easy to find employment for 
those in camps near cities. Some of them were put to work 
on deserted plantations. Others were incorporated into 
the army as teamsters, mechanics, and common laborers. 
Sojourner Truth, who served the Union army as a mes 
senger and a spy, rendered valuable service in these camps 
by teaching the refugees cleanliness and habits of industry. 

It was arranged also to send a number of these Negroes 
from the congested districts in the loyal States as fast as 
opportunities for their employment presented themselves. 
Those found near cities and manufacturing points, where 
Fugitives there was a demand for labor, were in some 
sent North. cases employed to do work in which white men 
sent to the war had been engaged. A good many passed 

4 For more extensive treatment, see John Eaton, Grant, Lincoln and 
the Freedmen; E. L. Pierce s The Freedmen of Port Royal, South 
Carolina; G. W. Williams s The History of Negro Troops, 90-98; E. H. 
Botume s First Days Amongst the Contrabands, and The Atlantic 
Monthly, XII, 308. 

The Negro In the Civil War 227 

through Cairo, Illinois, into the West, and some others were 
sent through York, Columbia, Harrisburg, and Philadelphia 
to points in the North. This, however, did not continue to a 
very great extent, for the reason that there was some appre 
hension that the North might be overcrowded by such f reed- 
men. Several schemes were set forth to transport this pop 
ulation, and when this number was still further increased 
by the thousands of Negroes emancipated in the District of 
Columbia in 1862, Abraham Lincoln himself thought to get 
rid of these freedmen by promoting a scheme to colonize 
them in foreign parts. 

To carry out this plan as he desired, he sent a special 
message to Congress expressing the necessity for Congres 
sional action in the way of an appropriation to finance such 
an enterprise. The Secretary of State, there- uncoi^g 
fore, opened correspondence with various colonization 
countries having colonies settled partly by plan * 
Negroes, thinking that they could be induced to accept 
Negro emigrants from this country. He conducted corre 
spondence then with Great Britain, Denmark, France, 
Sweden and all of the South American countries. In the 
beginning it became evident that only two countries, Liberia 
and Haiti, each of which were settled by Negroes, were will 
ing to admit these refugees. But the Negroes themselves, 
because of their prejudice against Liberia and the unsuc 
cessful effort at colonization in Haiti, did not care to emi 
grate to those countries. Favorable replies, however, finally 
came from the Island of A Vache. The government im 
mediately planned to send a colony to that settlement by 
virtue of an appropriation made by Congress. Bernard 
Koch approached the government and induced the authori 
ties to make with him a contract for the transportation 
of Negroes to this island. 

At the same time Koch connected himself with certain 

228 The Negro In Our History 

business men in New York, who, in return for commercial 
advantages to be gained there, agreed also to finance the 
The double enterprise. When this double dealing was 
dealing of discovered the United States Government 
severed connection with Koch. The capital 
ists, however, still determined to conduct this enterprise, 
engaged the services of Koch as governor. Accordingly 
a number of Negroes were sent to this island in the year 
1862, but owing to the unfavorable conditions and their lack 
of initiative, unusual suffering ensued. It was necessary 
for the Government, because of the many complaints re 
ceived therefrom, to send a special investigator to report on 
the situation, and finally, on account of his unfavorable 
report, to dispatch a transport to bring the emigrants back 
to the United States. 

Lincoln, however, remained fundamentally an antislav- 
ery man in spite of this untoward enterprise, but he re 
ligiously adhered to his gradual emancipation schemes. 
He would not permit the antislavery sentiment of the 
country to force upon him the policy of instant emancipa 
tion. As there were in the field generals availing them 
selves of every opportunity to weaken the slave power, 
much vigilance had to be exercised to avoid extreme 
measures which might embarrass the Federal Government. 
Taking the advanced position that the slaves should be free, 
Fremont issued a decree abolishing slavery in Missouri. 
It was necessary for Lincoln to say to him on September 
2, 1861 : * I think there is great danger that the closing 
paragraph, in relation to the confiscation of property and 
the liberating slaves of traitorous owners, will alarm our 
southern Union friends and turn them against us ; perhaps 
ruin our rather fair prospect for Kentucky. Allow me, 
therefore, to ask that you will, as of your own motion, 
modify that paragraph so as to conform to the first and 
fourth sections of the act of Congress, entitled An Act to 

The Negro In the Civil War 229 

Confiscate Property used for Insurrectionary Purposes." 
The following May, Lincoln had to deal similarly with 
Major-General Hunter, then stationed at Port Royal, South 
Carolina. This commander had issued a declaration to the 
effect that the commonwealths within his jurisdiction hav 
ing deliberately declared themselves no longer under the 
protection of the United States of America and having 
taken up arms against the United States, it became a mili 
tary necessity to declare martial law, and as slavery and 
martial law were incompatible in a free country, the per 
sons of these States held to service were declared free. 
Lincoln then issued a proclamation declaring that neither 
General Hunter nor any other commander or person had 
been authorized by the government of the United States to 
take such action and that the supposed proclamation in 
question, whether genuine or false, was altogether void 
so far as respects such a declaration. He considered it 
sufficient at that time to rely upon his proposed plan for the 
gradual abolition of slavery on the compensation basis re 
cently accepted by Congress. 

Writing Hunter again on the eleventh of the same month, 
Lincoln said : The particular clause, however, in relation 
to the confiscation of property and the liberation of slaves 
appeared to me to be objectionable in its nonconformity to 
the act of Congress passed the 6th of last August upon the 
same subjects ; and hence I wrote you, expressing my wish 
that that clause should be modified accordingly. Your 
answer, just received, expresses the preference on your part 
that I should make an open order for the modification, which 
I very cheerfully do. It is, therefore, ordered that the said 
clause of said proclamation be so modified, held, and con 
strued as to conform to, and not to transcend, the provisions 
on the same subject contained in the act of Congress, enti 
tled An Act to Confiscate Property used for Insurrectionary 

230 The Negro In Our History 

It was growing more and more apparent, however, that 
the Negro would have to be treated as a citizen of the 
United States. In the army he had demonstrated his ca- 
A convincing pacity as a man. He had shown that he could 
record. become industrious, that he was thrifty, and 

that he would serve unselfishly. Where he had an oppor 
tunity to toil upward he succeeded. It was therefore 
recommended by a number of men, and among them General 
Grant himself, that certain Negroes be so equipped and 
trained that they might be employed not only as teamsters 
and mechanics and the like, but as soldiers. This change of 
policy was necessary not merely for sentimental reasons but 
because the North, in its effort to subjugate the cavalier 
South, had found those warriors too well trained and too 
spirited to be easily conquered. In most of the important 
engagements the South had won. Farragut had captured 
New Orleans, Thomas and Grant had won a few victories 
in the West, and the Monitor had held its own with the 
Merrimac in defending the nation s cause, but the Union 
army had been twice ingloriously defeated at Manassas, and 
McClellan had lost in his Peninsular campaign and had 
thrown away his advantages gained at Antietam. As the 
army was unsuccessful under Burnside at Fredericksburg, 
and under Hooker at Chancellorsville, the North, growing 
tired of the war, was becoming fertile ground for seeds of 
a second secession sown by copperheads who were planning 
to establish another republic in the Northwest. It was 
deemed advisable, therefore, to bring the Negro into the 
army that he might help to save the Union. By this time, 
too, the Federal Government had reached the position that 
slavery, the root of most of the evils of the country and 
The the actual cause of the war, would have to be 

Emancipation exterminated. Congress passed sweeping con- 
Proclamation. fiscation acts by virtue of which the armies 
could take over slaves, and, in 1862, Lincoln came forward 

The Negro In the Civil War 231 

with the Emancipation Proclamation, declaring that after 
the first of January in 1863 all slaves in those parts of the 
country where the people might remain in rebellion against 
the United States, should be declared free. 

*, /*u, <&**+ ^ 



Northern men like General DePeyster, General Thomas 
W. Sherman, General Hunter, Governor Yates of Illinois, 
Henry Wilson, and Charles Sumner, had been emphatic in 
urging the United States Government to arm the Negroes 
to weaken the South. And well might the United States 

232 The Negro In Our History 

Army take this action, for the seceders had not only made 
use of the Negroes as laborers, but in Tennessee and Louisi 
ana had actually organized free Negroes for military serv 
ice in the Confederate Army. Yet, although the confis- 
The arming cation acts and other legislation justified the 
of Negroes. employment of Negroes, Lincoln hesitated to 
carry out these provisions. In 1862, however, General 
David Hunter, commanding in South Carolina, issued an 
order for recruiting a Negro regiment, which in a few 
months was in the field. This caused much dissatisfaction 
among the Unionists, who did not feel that Negroes should 
be called on to fight the battles of a free republic. An effort 
was made to embarrass General Hunter, but he emerged 
from the investigation without being reversed, although 
he did not have the support of Lincoln. General J. W. 
Phelps, under General B. F. Butler in Louisiana, under- 
toojs to carry out Hunter s policy, but his superior was 
then willing to use the Negroes as laborers only. 

Certain leaders in the North, however, were becoming a 
little more aggressive in their demand for the employment 
of Negroes as soldiers. On August 4, 1862, Governor 
Sprague of Rhode Island urged Negro citizens to enlist, and 
that same month Butler himself appealed to the free people 
of color of Louisiana to come to the defense of the Union. 
The next month a regiment of Negroes marched forth to 
war as the "First Regiment of Louisiana Native Guards," 
soon changed to the "First Regiment Infantry Corps 
d Afrique." There was later organized the "First Regi 
ment Louisiana Heavy Artillery." Other Negro regiments 
soon followed, and before the end of 1862 four Negro regi 
ments had been brought into the military service of the 
United States. Then came the "Kansas Colored Volun 
teers" early in 1863, and when the Emancipation Procla 
mation had been signed Lincoln officially authorized the 
raising of Negro troops. Then followed the famous Fifty- 

The Negro In the Civil War 


fourth Massachusetts and so many other troops that there 
was established in Washington a special, bureau for han 
dling affairs respecting these units, aggregating before the 
end of the war 178,975. 

In keeping with the custom which was all but followed 
during the World War, the Negro troops were commanded 
almost altogether by white officers. There was some doubt 



that the Negro would make a good soldier and, of course, 
the Negro officer was then almost impossible. The use of 
Massachusetts, however, commissioned ten Negro troops. 
Negro officers, Kansas three, and the military authorities 
a considerable number in Louisiana. Negroes held altogether 
about seventy-five commissions in the army during the Civil 
War. Among these officers were Lieutenant Colonel 

234 The Negro In Our History 

William N. Reed of the First North Carolina, a man well 
educated in Germany. He made a gallant charge with his 
regiment at the battle of Olustee, Florida, where he was 
mortally wounded. In the Kansas corps there were Captain 
H. Ford Douglass, First Lieutenant W. D. Matthews and 
Second Lieutenant Patrick A. Minor. In the U. S. C. T. 
One Hundred and Fourth Regiment there were Major 
Martin R. Delaney and Captain 0. S. B. Wall of Company 
K. Dr. Alexander T. Augusta, who was surgeon of the 
U. S. C. T. Seventh Regiment, was finally breveted with 
Lieutenant-Colonel. Dr. John V. DeGrasse was. assistant 
surgeon of the U. S. C. T. Thirty-fifth Regiment. Charles 
B. Purvis, Alpheus Tucker, John Rapier, William Ellis, 
Anderson R. Abbott and William Powell were hospital 
surgeons at Washington, D. C. 

One might inquire, too, as to exactly what was the status 
of the Negro troops. In the first place, they were not 
treated as the equals of white men. There was objection 
to giving them the same compensation offered the whites. 
The status of /-^ n ^ ne matter of bounties there was a dis- 
the Negro / crimination against Negro soldiers who were 
slaves on April 19, 1861. This caused dissatis 
faction among the Negro troops, whose families thereby 
seriously suffered. Sergeant William Walker was shot by 
order of court martial because he had his company stack 
arms before the captain s tent for the reason that the Gov 
ernment had failed to comply with its contract. The Fifty- 
fourth of Massachusetts nobly refused to receive its pay 
until it had been made equal to that of the whites. Negro 
troops, moreover, were often used by white troops for 
fatigue duty. Because of this notorious discrimination 
many of these soldiers became restive, sullen and even in 

Yet these Negroes distinguished themselves as soldiers. 

The Negro In the Civil War 235 

Men under whom these troops fought in battle were loud in 
praise of their gallantry and martyrdom. Negroes served 
in almost all parts of the South. They en- valuable 
gaged in the perilous South Edisto Expedition service, 
to burn a bridge above Walton Bluff to aid General Sher-> 
man, and participated in the ac 
tion at Honey Hill. Speaking 
of their behavior in the expedi 
tion to Dobey River in Georgia, 
General Rufus Saxton said that j 
they fought with most deter- J 
mined bravery. Surgeon Seth 
Rogers, operating in South Caro 
lina, said that braver men never 
lived. Colonel T. W. Higginson 
himself believed that "it would 
have been madness to attempt 
with the bravest white troops 
what he successfully accom 
plished with the black." Even 
in the failure to carry Fort Wag 
ner, a point necessary to the capture of Charleston, the 
Negro troops bore the severest tests of valor, following their 
gallant leader, Colonel Robert Gould Shaw, who in this 
charge fell mortally wounded. 

In the Mississippi Valley they fought still more bravely. 
Negro troops made six such desperate charges on a fort at 
Port Hudson that a reporter said that the deeds of heroism 
performed by these black men were such as Bravery in 
the proudest white men might emulate. Gen- the West, 
eral Banks said in referring to their behavior : "It gives 
me great pleasure to report that they answered every ex 
pectation. Their conduct was heroic ; no troops could be 
more determined or more daring." Other troops from 

GINSON, a commander 
of Negro troops 

236 The Negro In Our History 

Louisiana showed themselves equally brave at Milliken s 
Bend. Keporting this battle, Captain Matthew M. Miller 
said : So they fought and died, defending the cause that 
we revere. They met death coolly, bravely ; nor rashly did 
they expose themselves, but all were steady and obedient to 
orders." And so went others to death in the massacre at 
Fort Pillow in Tennessee, where the Confederates, in keep 
ing with their bold declaration not to give quarter to the 
slaves striking for their own freedom, slaughtered them as 
men kill beasts. 

In the Department of the Potomac the Negro maintained 
there his reputation as a soldier. Under General Wild, at 
Fort Powhatan in 1864, the Negro soldiers bravely held their 
Bravery ground against the heavy onslaught of Fitz- 

alongthe hugh Lee s brilliant soldiers, who were badly 

>otomac. worsted in the conflict. When General Grant 
was endeavoring to reduce Petersburg, a brigade of Hinck s 
Negro division brilliantly dashed forward and cleared a 
line of rifle-pits and carried a redoubt ahead. They did 
valiant work of the same order at South Mountain and died 
bravely in carrying the fortified positions of the Confed 
erates at New Market Heights and nearer to Petersburg. In 
the dash along the James and in the pursuit of Lee s weak 
ened forces, the Negroes under arms maintained their bear 
ing as brave men and came out of the Civil War as heroes. 

In carrying on the Civil War many constitutional ques 
tions arose. Chief among these was the suspension of the 
Writ of habeas corpus in the cases of certain copperheads 
Constitutional or " pacifists" in the North, who arrayed 
questions. themselves against the United States Govern 

ment and at one time even threatened the country with an 
additional secession. The Constitution provided for the sus 
pension of the writ in times of great danger, but it is not 
clear whether the framers of the Constitution contemplated 
that this power should be exercised by the President of the 

The Negro In the Civil War 237 

United States. Furthermore, those who asserted that the 
writ could be suspended under certain conditions did not 
concede the right to the President to suspend it in sections 
where the courts were open and where the armies were not 
in operation. The most important case of this kind was 
that of Milligan, when by operation of the courts the 
plaintiff undertook to secure his liberty through a writ of 
habeas corpus and the President of the United States in 

There arose also a question as to taxing the people unduly 
to support a government waging war to coerce certain 
States, interfering with the freedom of the press by the 
censorship established during the war, enforc- Taxation, 
ing conscription acts compelling men to fight against their 
will, and finally, by action of Congress, providing for 
gradual emancipation in certain border States and the abo 
lition of slavery in the District of Columbia. Whether Con 
gress could constitutionally legislate respecting slavery was 
still a question, but the Civil War gradually brought the 
country to a realization that Congress, representing the peo 
ple of the United States, had adequate power in the prem 
ises. Because of vesting the President with dictatorial 
power to wage the war effectively, however, there came from 
certain sources a bitter antagonism which led to the organ 
ization of a party of opposition advocating the Union as it 
was and the Constitution as it is. 

The most important constitutional matter coming up dur 
ing the Civil War was that of the Emancipation Proclama 
tion itself. Lincoln had for some time wondered whether 
or not he had such authority, and long hesitated to issue this 
mandate declaring free all the Negroes in the y^ 
districts then in rebellion against the United emancipation 
States. Fremont, Hunter and Butler, in pro 
charge of Union armies, had undertaken to do this, but had 
to be restrained. One of the members of Lincoln s cabinet 

238 The Negro In Our History 

was of the opinion that he had no such power and that such 
a step would doubtless do more harm than good. In the end, 
however, just after a number of encouraging Union vic 
tories, the Emancipation Proclamation was issued and had 
its desired effect, but to become legal it had to be fortified 
by the Thirteenth Amendment. Few persons have since 
questioned the Thirteenth Amendment, but the Fourteenth 
and Fifteenth which followed thereupon have since given 
rise to all sorts of constitutional questions involving the 
rights of the Negroes. 



As soon as the Union armies began to occupy a consid 
erable portion of the territory of the so-called seceded 
States, there was some thought about the rehabilitation of 
these commonwealths. 1 As to the exact posi- Lincoln s 
tion of these commonwealths which had un- reconstruc- 
dertaken to withdraw from the Union, there 
was a wide difference of opinion. Lincoln himself was of 
the impression that a State could not get out of the 
Union. "Once in the Union, forever in the Union," was 
his theory. Lincoln therefore issued, on December 8, 1863, 
a proclamation setting forth a plan for the recon 
struction of these commonwealths. Making exception of 
those who had served in the civil or diplomatic service of 
the Confederate Government or in judicial stations, of 
those who had -served in the army or navy with rank above 
colonel, or who had abandoned Congress to aid the rebellion, 
resigned commissions in the army, or cruelly treated Ne 
groes or white persons in charge of them, Lincoln pro- 

i There are no scientific studies of the nation-wide reconstruction 
in which the Negroes took a part. W. L. Fleming, James F. Rhodes, 
W. A. Dunning and J. W. Burgess have written works in this field, 
but they are biased and inadequate. Almost a score of other so- 
called scientific studies of Reconstruction in the various States have 
been made, but these merely try to make, a case for the white man s 
eide of the question as to whether the reduction of the Negro to serf 
dom was just. John R. Lynch in his Facts of Reconstruction, and 
WEB. DuBois in his Reconstruction, and Its Benefits (in the 
American Historical Review, XV, No. 4) have undertaken to point out 
these defects. 


240 The Negro In Our History 

claimed full pardon to the people in the Confederate States 
with the restoration of all rights of property except as to 
slaves if they should take and subscribe to an oath of al 
legiance to the United States Government and thencefor 
ward keep and maintain this oath inviolate. 

Lincoln further proclaimed that whenever in any of these 
States there should be loyal persons to the number of not 
less than one-tenth of the votes cast in such States at the 
presidential election of the year 1860, each having taken 
The ten per this oath and not having violated it and being 
cent basis. a qualified voter by the election law of the 
State existing prior to the secession, the commonwealth 
should establish a State government. This government 
should be democratic, should be recognized as the true gov 
ernment of the State, and should receive the benefits of the 
constitutional provision which declares that the United 
States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a re 
publican form of government. 

Lincoln also proclaimed that any provision which these 
commonwealths thus restored might adopt in relation to 
the freed people within their limits, which should recognize 
Interest In and declare their permanent freedom, and 
the freedmen. provide for their education, which might then 
be consistent as a temporary arrangement with their 
condition as a laboring, landless and homeless class, 
would not be objected to by the President. The President 
was of the opinion that the name of the State, 
the boundary, subdivisions, constitution, and the former 
code of laws should be maintained, subject only to 
the modification made necessary by the conditions elsewhere 
stated in the proclamation, and such others, if any, not 
contravening the conditions of the proclamation and which 
might be deemed expedient by those framing the new State 

Upon this basis Lincoln undertook the reconstruction of 

The Reconstruction 


the States of Louisiana, Arkansas, and Tennessee prior to 
the close of the Civil War as soon as loyal men to the number 
of one-tenth of the voters exercising suffrage in the presi 
dential election of 1860 were found in states 
those commonwealths. When the cessation reorganized, 
of arms finally came, several other rebellious common 
wealths, thinking that the States as such could never be 
destroyed, proceeded to organize similar governments, 


complying with the conditions of repudiating the Confeder 
ate debts, declaring allegiance to the Union, and ratifying 
the Thirteenth Amendment. They, therefore, feeling that 
they would be immediately admitted to the Union with the 
rights and privileges formerly enjoyed by the Southern 
States, elected representatives and senators to sit in Con 
gress. Believing that Lincoln s position in this case was 
sound, Andrew Johnson, his successor, undertook to carry 
out this policy. This, however, was not acceptable to the 
statesmen then in control of affairs, and the right of such 

242 The Negro In Our History 

persons to serve as representatives of these commonwealths 
was questioned. 

They found in Congress men led by Thaddeus Stevens, 
who was of the opinion that inasmuch as the Southern 
States had rebelled and had failed to maintain their cause, 
Various they were then subject to the same treatment 

theories. as anv other people in a conquered territory. 

This, to be sure, conflicted with certain other views, as it ad 
mitted that secession had been temporarily successful, and 
conflicted with the administrative plans of Lincoln and 
Johnson to the effect that secession was merely an unsuc 
cessful effort and that the States were still in the Union. 
Shellabarger contended that secession was a nullity, which 
although it could not assume control of the territory in 
which it existed, nevertheless worked a loss in the status of 
a member of the Union, and the citizens remaining therein 
were, therefore, exclusively subjected to the jurisdiction of 
the United States Government. This was endorsed by 
Sumner, Fessenden and Wilson, and became, in fact, the 
theory of the Republican Party in Congress, which grew 
antagonistic to the administration and led to the long differ 
ences of opinion between that body and Johnson, finally 
culminating in the impeachment of the President. 

There came also to the national capital various reports 
which further convinced the gentlemen in charge of affairs 
in Congress that the South was unwilling to grant the Negro 
Theunwill- the right to enjoy the fruits of the victory of 
ing South. the Civil WaTj f or the freedmen were being 

oppressed almost to the extent of being enslaved. The first 
reports were brought in by General Grant and Carl Schurz, 
the former contending that the southerners were in the 
main willing to accept the changes effected by the Civil 
War, and the latter being of the opinion that the rebellious 
commonwealths were not loyal and intended to reenslave 
the Negroes. Some of these States were enacting black 

The Reconstruction 



244 The Negro In Our History 

codes providing for apprenticeship, penalizing the vagrancy 
of Negroes, and interfering with the civil rights of the freed- 
men. Many of the blacks, having wandered about or flocked 
to the towns where they too often were reduced to poverty 
and subject to temptations and vicious influences, tended to 
retrograde rather than advance. The vagrancy laws, there 
fore, generally provided for fines, corporal punishment, in 
denturing for a certain period of service, and in a few cases 
required that every Negro should be attached to some 
employer. Furthermore, there had set in a general intimi 
dation of Negroes, and in some parts, as in Louisiana, 
large numbers of the race were massacred by antagonistic 
whites, with no excuse but that of trying to regain the lost 
cause. Assured that the situation was deplorable, Congress 
proceeded to draft the Fourteenth Amendment as a condi 
tion of readmission of a seceded State to the Union, endeav 
oring to prevent any State from making or enforcing a law 
which would encroach upon the privileges or immunities 
of citizens of the United States, deprive them of life, 
liberty or property without due process of law, or with 
hold from any one within its jurisdiction the equal protec 
tion of the law. In this way the South, by taking a radical 
position in its unwise application of its power to deal with 
persons over whom it would have been given more control, 
brought upon itself a military rule from which it would 
not have suffered if it had been disposed to treat the freed- 
men humanely. 

These reports led also to the organization of what is 
known as the Freedmen s Bureau, 2 the commission estab 
lished for the protection and the assistance of the freedmen. 
Some such idea had for some years been expressed from 

2 On the twenty-fifth of May the committee reported the House bill 
with a substitute amendment, and the bill thus amended passed the 
Senate on the twenty-ninth of June by a vote of 21 to 9. The select 
committee of the House recommended that the amendments of the 
Senate be disagreed to and further action was postponed until Decem- 

The Reconstruction 245 

time to time in Congress. A bill * to establish a bureau of 
emancipation" was reported in the House, December 22, 
1863, by Eliot, of Massachusetts, from the The Freed- 
Select Committee on Emancipation, and men s Bureau, 
then recommitted. The bill was reported with amend 
ments on the thirteenth of January, 1864, and on the first 
of March passed the House by a vote of 69 to 67. In 
the Senate the bill was referred to the Select Committee 
on Slavery and Freedmen, of which Charles Sumner was 
chairman. A bill to establish a bureau of freedmen was re 
ported from the committee on the twelfth of April. 
On the third of March the report of a second conference 
committee was agreed to by both houses. The measure to 
establish the department was vetoed by President Johnson 
who, in giving his reasons, so antagonized the leaders in 
Congress as to widen the irreparable breach between the 
executive and legislative departments. This bill, with cer 
tain objectionable features removed, was later passed over 
the President s veto, but had to be amended thereafter. 

The act provided for the appointment of a commissioner 
with a number of assistants under the administration of the 
President to care for the freedmen in the districts in re 
bellion or controlled by the Union army. Primarily the 
Freedmen s Bureau was intended to aid refugees and freed 
men by supplying them with provisions and in taking up 
abandoned lands in the South, which were to be distributed 
in parcels of not more than forty acres each. On account 
of misrepresentations many Negroes expected from this 
quarter forty acres of land and a mule for each of the 
landless freedmen, and this prospective charity tended to 
produce vagrancy and shiftlessness among people indulged 

ber. On the twentieth of December a conference committee was ap 
pointed. The report of the committee was accepted by the House on 
the ninth of February, 1865, by a vote of 64 to 62, 56 not voting; 
but it was rejected by the Senate on the twenty-second by a vote of 
14 to 24. See also the Freedmen s Bureau Act in the Appendix. 


The Negro In Our History 

as dependent children. The Freedmen s Bureau was vested 
with the power to build school houses and asylums for the 
Negroes, and it was proposed to give it unusual power in 
its jurisdiction over all civil and criminal cases where 

equality in civil rights and 
in the application of jus 
tice was denied on ac 
count of race, color, or 
previous condition of ser 
vitude. With this unusual 
power vested in machin 
ery coming from without 
the State and intended 
to benefit persons recently 
enslaved, the Freedmen s 
Bureau became a source of 
much irritation to the 
whites of the South. Grant 
thought that the officers of 
the Freedmen s Bureau 

GEN. O. 0. HOWARD, head of the were a useless set of men 
Freedmen s Bureau and founder of -, -, -, ,, ,, 

Howard University an(1 recommended tnat the 

work be placed in charge 

of army officers. It was for a number of years directed by 
General 0. 0. Howard, the founder of Howard University. 
When Congress finally decided to ignore Johnson s re 
construction schemes, a committee was appointed to work 
out a more acceptable plan. After some deliberation these 
gentlemen returned with a majority and a minority report. 
Congressional The ma J orit y report, representing the views 
of the Unionists, was to the effect that the 
attempted secession of eleven States had re 
sulted in the loss of their stateship and in their becoming 
disorganized communities, but that although the State gov 
ernments in the same had been destroyed, the common- 


The Reconstruction 


wealths had not escaped the obligations of the Constitution 
and the authority of the United States Government. The 
minority report, representing the secessionist theory, was 
that a State could never be anything less than a State, re 
gardless of what its deeds may be, and each was, therefore, 
entitled to the same powers, rights and privileges under the 
Constitution as those given any other State. It is needless 
to say that under these circumstances the minority report 
had little weight. 

Congress thereupon proceeded in accordance with the 
views of the majority to work out a plan for the control 

of the disorganized States. In 
spite of the President s opposition 
and his vetoes, it was decided to 
divide the seceded States into five 
military districts, to each of which 
the President would Military 
assign an army of- districts, 
ficer of not lower rank than a 
brigadier general, with a sufficient 
force to enable him to carry out 
the laws of the Union. The com 
manders were to govern these 
.districts by martial law as far as 
in their judgments the reign of order and the preser 
vation of public peace might demand. No sentence of 
death, however, could be carried out without the approval 
of the President. To escape, from this military govern 
ment, a rebellious State had to accept universal man 
hood suffrage of all male citizens of twenty-one years of 
age without regard to color, race or previous condition of 
servitude. This election would provide for the framing 
of a State constitution through delegates to be chosen, ex 
cepting persons who were disqualified by participation in 
the rebellion. There would have to be a ratification of this 



The Negro In Our History 

constitution by a majority of the voters as designated by 
the same law of suffrage for the delegates of the convention. 
These States, moreover, would have to ratify the Fourteenth 
Amendment, which protected the Negroes from the oppres 
sion of the whites in that it guaranteed to them the enjoy 
ment of the privileges and immunities of citizens without re 
gard to race, color or previous 
condition of servitude. The 
South had refused to ratify this 

Some of the States immedi 
ately availed themselves of this 
opportunity to be relieved of the 
military regime, for there was 
among them a natural antago- 
Different n ism to martial law. 
courses Other States, Vir- 

lowed ginia, Georgia and 
Texas, however, refused to take 
advantage of this concession, 
hoping to find a better solution 
of the problem by adopting the JoHN R L * es a s member of 
policy of watchful waiting. The 

citizens of these States found out that the military gov 
ernment was more acceptable than the governments so 
quickly organized in some of the other Southern States, and 
decided then for the time being to obey the dictum of the 
army. In the course of time there was an enlargement of 
the white majority by the extension of the terms of granting 
pardon to those who had participated in> the rebellion, and 
as there was already a larger percentage of white persons 
than Negroes in these three States when the time did come 
for them to organize State governments, there soon de 
veloped a majority opposed to radical reconstruction^ The 
other States in the South, from 1868 to about 1872, became 

The Reconstruction 


subjected to what is commonly known as Negro carpet-bag 

To call this Negro rule, however, is very much of a mis 
take when, as a matter of fact, most of the local offices in 
these commonwealths were held by the white men, and those 
Negroes who did attain some of the higher offices were 

usually about as competent as 
the average whites thereto 
elected. Only twenty Negroes 
served in Congress from 1868 
to 1895. The Negroes had politi 
cal equality in the Southern 
States only a few years, and 
with some exceptions their ten 
ure in Congress was very short. 
Hiram R. Revels Not a Negro 
of Mississippi com- T ^ me - 
pleted an unexpired term in the 
Senate and B. K. Bruce served 
there six years. John M. Lang- 

ston, the Negro member from 
H. R. REVELS, U. S. Senator ^ T . . . *, ,-, TT 

from Mississippi Virginia, served in the House 

one term. From North Caro 
lina there were sent to the House of Representatives, John 
A. Hyman for one term and James E. O Hara, H. P. 
Cheatham and George H. White for two terms each. Jef 
ferson F. Long represented a district of Georgia a part of 
a term. Josiah T. Walls of Florida served in the House 
two terms. Alabama elected to Congress Jere Haralson, 
Benjamin S. Turner and James T. Rapier, who served one 
term each. Louisiana sent Charles E. Nash for one term, 
and Mississippi John R. Lynch for two. South Carolina 
had the largest number of Negro representatives in tha 
House. Joseph H. Rainey of that Commonwealth sat in 
Congress five terms; Richard H, Cain, two; Robert C. 

The Negro In Our History 




The Reconstruction 


DeLarge, one; Alonzo J. Ransier, one; Robert B. Elliott, 

two; Robert Smalls, five; Thomas E. Miller, one; and 

George W. Murray, two. 

The charge that all Negro officers were illiterates, ignorant 

of the science of government, cannot be sustained. Some of 

them had undergone con 
siderable training and had 
experienced sufficient men 
tal development to be able 
to discharge their duties 
with honor. Hiram R. 
Revels spent two years in a 

Quaker sem- Literacy of 
i n a r y and voters and 


was later in 
structed at Knox College; 
B. K. Bruce was educated 
at Oberlin College. Jere 
Haralson learned enough to 
teach. R. H. Cain studied 
at Wilberforce. James T. 
Rapier was well educated 
in a Catholic school in Can 
ada, Benjamin Turner 
clandestinely received a 

B. K. BRUCE, U. S. Senator from 

fair education in Alabama. James E. O Hara obtained a 
secondary education. Robert Brown Elliott, educated at 
Eton College, England, had, according to Frederick 
Douglass, no peer in his race except Samuel R. Ward. 
John M. Langston, after finishing both the college and 
theological courses at Oberlin, practiced law in Ohio. John 
R. Lynch, as evidenced by his addresses and writings, was 
well educated by his dint of energy, although he had only 
a common school training. Most Negroes who sat in Con 
gress during the eighties and nineties, moreover, had more 

m m^m. y^K^S 
m ^~ ,nf 

252 The Negro In Our History 

formal education than Warren G. Harding, now President 
of the United States. 

Other Negro officeholders, furthermore, were liberally 
trained. Kichard T. Greener, a Reconstruction office 
holder in South Carolina, was the first Negro graduate 
of Harvard College. F. L. Cardozo, another functionary 

in the same State, was educated 
at the University of Glasgow, 
Scotland. E. D. Bassett, who 
distinguished himself as an edu 
cator and as Minister to Liberia, 
studied the classics, mathematics 
and general literature at Yale 
after being graduated at the 
Birmingham Academy and the 
rfe H Connecticu^^State Normal 

,gjjjiifm m Sch o1 - ^^B S - Finback ad- 

TO| mirably u^^o. common sense 

pf^fl with his fundamental education 

^^ JP obtained largely at Gilmore s 

High School in Cincinnati, Ohio, 
JOSEPH H.RAIN member ^ rior to the war 

Were Negroes in general ca 

rte? To what extent were they qualified to discharge 
the duties of citizens? It is true that many of them 
were not prepared to vote, and decidedly disqualified for 
Negroes the positions which they held. In some of 

capable. ^ e legislatures, as in Louisiana and South 

Carolina, more than half of the Negro members could 
scarcely read or write and had, therefore, to vote ac 
cording to emotions or the dictates of the demagogues, 
?, of course, it has been true of legislature composed en 
tirely of whites. In the local and State administrative of 
fices, however, where there were frequent chances for cor 
ruption, very few ignorant Negroes ever served. In 

The Reconstruction 


fact, most Negroes insisted on finding the best qualified 
candidates for important positions. That they often 
failed in obtaining such is not due to the shortcomings 
of the Negro but to the leadership of the white adven 
turers and to the refusal of ex-slaveholders to cooperate 
with the freedmen in establishing the Reconstruction gov 
ernments on a sounder basis. 
Most of the local, State and 
Federal offices, however, were 
held not by Negroes but by 
southern white men, and by 
others who came from the North 
and profited by the prostration 
of the South. They were in 
many respects sel- White men 
fish men, but not in control, 
always utterly lacking in prin 
ciple. The northern whites, of 
course, had little sympathy for 
the South and depended for 
their constituency upon the Ne 
groes, who could not be expected 
to placate the ex-slaveholders. Being adventurers and in 
terested in their own affairs, the carpet-baggers became un 
usually corrupt in certain States, administering affairs not 
for the benefit of the body politic but for their own personal 
aggrandizement. Yet although Negroes were implicated in 
these offenses, few of them materially profited by this pro 
cedure. Most Negro officers who served in the South came 
out of office with an honorable record. Such was the case 
with J. T. White, Commissioner of Public Works and Inter 
nal Improvements in Arkansas, M. W. Gibbs, City Judge in 
Little Rock, J. C. Corbin, State Superintendent of Schools 
in the same State, F. L. Cardozo, State Treasurer of South 
Carolina, T. Morris Chester, Brigadier General in charge 

ber of Congress 


The Negro In Our History 

of the State Guards of Louisiana, and P. B. S. Pinchback, 
Lieutenant and Acting Governor of Louisiana. Others who 
held office elsewhere lived up to the same record. Chief 
among these may be mentioned Frederick Douglass, who 
served in the District of Columbia as Marshal and Re 
corder of Deeds and abroad as Minister to Haiti. 

Whether or not the Negro was capable, whether he was 
honest, however, had little to do 
with the southern white man s 
attitude toward the Negro office 
holders. To produce evidence 
that the Negroes lacked these 
essentials, the whites well knew, 
Prejudice a would help them to 
factor. justify themselves 

to the world for using such harsh 
measures to overthrow the new- 
regime. But the Negro was un 
acceptable merely because he was 
black, because he had not en 
joyed the distinction of wringing 
his bread from the sweat of another s brow. Government, 
as the southern man saw it, should be based on an aristo 
cratic exploitation of the man far doAvn. As the slave 
holders had for centuries enjoyed this exclusive privilege, 
they could not but bear it grievously that it had been sud 
denly taken away. 

That the new governments were corrupt was not an ex 
ception to the rule of that time. With the reorganization 
of things throughout the country after the Civil War, and 
Corruption the opening up of new industries and oppor- 
explained. tunities in the undeveloped parts of this coun 
try, there came an era of speculation, dishonest business, 
and corrupt governments, implicating the highest State and 
Federal functionaries. There never was a more corrupt 

P. B. S. PlTVCHBACK, act 

ing Governor of Louisiana 

The Reconstruction 255 

government than that conducted by the whites, constituting 
the Tweed ring in New York. The very persons who com 
plained of the corruption in the Negro carpet-bag govern 
ments and who effected the reorganization of the State gov 
ernments in the South when the Negroes were overthrown, 
moreover, became just as corrupt as the governing class un 
der the preceding regime. In almost every restored State 
government in the South, and especially in Mississippi, the 
white officers in control of the funds defaulted. These per 
sons who had been so long out of office came back so eager 
to get the most out of them that they filled their own pockets 
from the coffers of the public. 

In contradistinction to this rule of stealing from the pub 
lic treasury, Debuclet, the Negro who served as Treasurer 
of the State of Louisiana and who, when the government 
of that State was taken from the Negroes by Excellent 
the restored aristocrats, had still two years to record of 
serve, was investigated with a view to finding uc ** 

out some act of misuse of the public funds that he might be 
impeached and thrown out of office. The committee, of 
which E. D. White, late Chief Justice of the United States 
Supreme Court, was chairman, after much deliberation 
reported that his funds had been honestly handled and that 
there were no grounds on which proceedings against him 
could be instituted. 

The gravest charge against the Negroes seemed to grow 
out of the unwritten law that the superior white race should 
not be ruled by its inferiors. That there should be unusual 
friction in communities where persons, who a Haughtiness, 
few years prior to their elevation to citizenship had served 
as goods and chattels, should at that time be passing among 
the whites as civil and military officers, should excite little 
surprise. But true students of history know that the Ne 
groes were not especially anxious to put themselves forward. 
While there were a good many among them seeking to be 

256 The Negro In Our History 

placed where they could not serve, the majority of the blacks 
were anxious to secure the cooperation, of the best whites. 
But because of the unusual antagonistic attitude of the 
former slaveholders, feeling that the Negro should have 
no part in the government at all, they refused to cooperate, 
hoping that they could in some way effect the complete 
elimination of the Negro from politics, as they have done in 
recent years. The result, therefore, was that the Negroes 
were in the beginning compelled to support for office white 
men who had never been tried and who had in some cases 
given evidence of dishonest purposes. 

The argument against this, however, is that the Negroes 
should not have been enfranchised and that the government 
should have been organized among the loyal whites. To 
Enfranchise- this it may be replied that there were few loyal 
ment question, whites, and many of those who pretended that 
they were and undertook to organize governments proved 
to be just as oppressive as they ever had been, and in 
fact undertook to reestablish slavery. Had there been a 
close cooperation among the best whites in the South and a 
gradual incorporation of the intelligent freedmen into the 
electorate, many of the mistakes made would have been obvi 
ated ; and the recent steps backward towards lynching and 
peonage would not have been made. 

These criticisms of the carpet-bag government had the 
desired effect among the poor and ignorant whites who, 
reared under the degrading influences of slavery, could not 
Ku Klux Klan. tolerate the blacks as citizens. The Negroes 
thereafter were harassed and harried by disturbing ele 
ments of anarchy, out of which soon emerged an oath-bound 
order called the Ku Klux Klan, terrorizing the Negroes 
with lawlessness and violence. Congress, therefore, deemed 
it necessary to pass a series of repressive measures, known 
as " force bills," to protect the Negroes in the enjoyment of 
the civil and political rights. The President was author- 

The Reconstruction 

258 The Negro In Our History 

ized to suppress insurrection in the Southern States where 
and when local authorities were powerless and might sus 
pend the writ of habeas corpus. The jurisdiction of the 
Federal courts was so extended as to take cognizance of 
cases in which Negroes complained of being deprived of 
their rights. This legislation also contemplated the use 
of Federal troops to secure fair election in these States. 
While these measures offered temporary relief they caused 
such deep resentment in the South, especially among those 
whites who were endeavoring to suppress mob violence, 
that the South tended to become a smoldering volcano 
awaiting an opportunity for eruption. 

The denouement came from President Rutherford B. 
Hayes in the withdrawal of the troops to the support of 
whom he probably owed his doubtful election. The occasion 
ipjjQ was the consideration of the question of con- 

withdrawal tinuing the use of troops in South Carolina. 
Hayes said: "In my opinion, there does not 
now exist in that State such domestic violence as is con 
templated by the Constitution as the ground upon which the 
military power of the National Government may be invoked 
for the defense of the State, but these are settled by 
such orderly and peaceable methods as may be provided by 
the Constitution and laws of the State. I feel assured that 
no resort to violence is contemplated in any quarter, but 
that, on the contrary, the disputes in question are to be set 
tled solely by such peaceful remedies as the Constitution 
and the laws of the State provide. " 

The withdrawal of the national troops from the South 
gave much relief to the whites in that section and pleased 
a majority of the Northern citizens, who, despite the efforts 
of the Southerners to break up the Union, could not support 
the policy of forever afflicting them with martial law. The 
Negroes and their sympathizers, however, have always con 
sidered this the most unstatesman-like act any President 

The Reconstruction 259 

has committed since the war. They contend that it almost 
immediately restored to power the unreconstructed element 
which, because of the color of the freedmen, segregated, 
disfranchised and lynched them to the extent that the 
United States can now be criticized for not complying with 
that clause of the Constitution guaranteeing every State 
a republican form of government. These troops should 
have undoubtedly been withdrawn by gradual process, in 
the proportion that the districts thus relieved exhibited 
evidence of the ability to protect all citizens in the enjoy 
ment of their rights and privileges. 

The closing chapter in the reconstruction is its undoing. 
The whites reclaimed the governments from the Negroes. 
Not only were they anxious to take over the offices and the 
public funds, but to prevent the Negroes from ^Q un d i ng 

participating thereafter in the governments of of the re- 

. , construction, 
those States they enacted measures which by 

peculiar provisions in the laws of suffrage for the qualifica 
tions of voters eliminated most Negroes from the electorate 
on the grounds that they could not read and write, did not 
own property, or were not descendants of persons who had 
voted prior to certain dates. In this way they hedged 
around the Fifteenth Amendment, which provided that the 
right to vote should not be denied on account of race, color 
or previous condition of servitude. They, moreover, cur 
tailed the privileges of the Negroes by segregation laws 
dealing first with places of amusements like theaters and 
parks, with the schools, and finally with farming and resi 
dential districts in most parts of the South. 



THE abridgment of the Negroes rights came as such a 
calamity that for a generation following the restoration of 
the reactionaries to power, the Negroes were in a state of 
The confusion seeking to extricate themselves from 

untoward their difficulties. 1 There then ensued a most 
cruel persecution of the blacks by the degraded 
and impecunious poor whites. Although assured that the 
Negroes could not under the circumstances soon regain their 
political rights, certain criminal communities have found 
special delight in killing and lynching Negroes on account 
of offenses for which a white man would hardly be accused, 
if the complainant happened to be black. The local news 
papers, by their art of psychological appeal to the race 
prejudice of the masses, have succeeded in convincing the 
public that the general cause of these lynchings was crimi 
nal assault, but statistics show that ordinary misdemeanors 
of Negroes have been the sole excuse for three out of every 
four of these lynchings. 

The extent to which the country has been disgraced by 

i George W. Williams, History of the Negro Race, II, 375-380; C. 
G. Woodson, A Century of Negro Migration, chs. VII and VIII; The 
Atlantic Monthly, XLIV, page 222 et seq.; TheVicksburg Commercial, 
May 6, 1919; The Nation, XXVIII, 242, 386; The American Journal 
of Social Science, XI, 1-35; Public Opinion, XVIII, 370 et seq.; The 
American Law Review, XL, 29, 52, 205, 227, 354, 381, 547, 590, 695, 
758, 865, 905; Reports of Committees of the Senate of the United 
States for the First and Second Sessions of the Forty-sixth Congress, 
1879-1880, pp. iii-xiii. 


Finding a Way of Escape 261 

the institution of lynching may be more easily estimated by 
a few statistics. According to General Sheridan, 3,500 per 
sons were killed in the South during the first Lynching, 
decade after emancipation ; 1,884 were killed and wounded 
in 1868, and probably 1,200 between 1868 and 1875. Most 
of these massacres occurred in the disturbed area of Louisi 
ana. Following that period the number of Negroes annually 
lynched in the whole country aggregated between fifty and 
a hundred, and the whole number for the reconstruction 
and readjustment periods not less than 2,500. As the 
Negroes were no longer valuables attached to owners, as 
horses or cattle, there was little to restrain the degraded 
class from murdering them in communities where few white 
men had any conception of the blacks as persons entitled to 
life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. 

The economic situation in the South in the meantime be 
came critical. The poor whites who were unwilling to labor 
themselves so disturbed the Negroes that their employment 
was precarious. The ex-slaveholders, more- The economic 
over, imposed upon the Negroes willing to situation, 
work. The Negroes were the only dependable laboring 
classes in the South, and too many were trying to live on the 
fruits of the Negroes labor. Whether aware or not of being 
duped, the Negroes had to seek employment by the whites, 
as they had no capital to operate farms and factories inde 
pendently. Some of those who, during the happiest days of 
reconstruction, succeeded in acquiring property, saw it 
thereafter seized on the plea of delinquent taxes and trans 
ferred to the master class. 

The land in the South, moreover, remained mainly in 
large tracts held by planters, who, except in the case of 
poverty, never desired to dispose of it ; and even if they had 
been thus inclined, the Negroes could not un- Land Tenure, 
der the existing regime quickly earn sufficient money to 
purchase large holdings. There was then no chance for the 

262 The Negro In Our History 

Negroes to develop at once into a desirable class of farmers. 
They then became mainly a wage-earning element dependent 
on the will of their employers. As few of the Negroes could 
read and write, they were cheated in signing contracts and 
had to suffer the consequent privations aggravated by 
cruelty, if they unduly complained. 

The wage system of the South early failed to give satis 
faction, except in the sugar district. The planters then 
made the experiment of working on shares, but had to 
Wage system abandon this because the employer was not 
tried. always able to advance the Negro tenant sup 

plies pending the growth of the crop, and some insisted that 
the Negro was too indifferent and lazy to make the partner 
ship desirable. It was then decided to resort to the renting 
system, which became the accepted tenure in the cotton 
district. While this system apparently threw the tenant 
on his own responsibility, it frequently made him the victim 
Rent system, of his own ignorance and the rapacity of his 
landlord. As the Negroes could do no better they had to 
pay such high rent that they hardly derived from their labor 
adequate returns to support their families. 

The worst feature of the rent plan was its iniquitous 
concomitant, the credit system. Having no capital to begin 
with, a Negro tenant became dependent on his landlord for 
The credit advance of supplies of tools, food and clothing 
system. during the year, secured by a lien on the 

crop. As these new tenants had had only a few years 
of freedom to learn business methods, they became a prey 
to dishonest men who, through their stores and banks, ex 
torted from the Negroes practically all of their earnings be 
fore the end of the year. A few honest planters desired to 
protect the Negroes by supplying them at reasonable prices ; 
but subject to usury themselves, their efforts availed little. 
It was necessary then for the Negro tenant to begin the 
year with three mortgages, covering all he owned, his labor 

Finding a Way of Escape 263 

for the coming year, and all he expected to acquire during 
that twelvemonth. According to an observer of the time, 
he paid "one-third of his product for the use of the land; 
he paid an exorbitant fee for recording the contract, by 
which he paid his pound of flesh; he was charged two or 
three times as much as he ought to pay for ginning his cot 
ton ; and, finally, he turned over his crop to be eaten up in 
commissions, if any was still left to him." 

Various means of escape from these conditions were there 
fore considered. Some Negroes still looked forward to a 
change in politics, believing that a reconstructed Republican 
Party would again interfere in southern af- Remedies 
fairs to relieve the Negroes. Others had the proposed, 
idea that religion would be the solution of the problem. 
They insisted that the calamities of the race resulted as 
an affliction with which they had been visited because of 
their wandering away from God, who would right their 
wrongs as soon as they heeded His pleading voice. 

The unrest, however, first found a safety valve in the 
exodus of the Negroes. During the seventies a considerable 
number of them moved from North Carolina to Indiana, 
where because of the pivotal political situation in that State 
their migration gave rise to the accusation that they were 
being brought thither for the purpose of carrying doubtful 
States for the Republican Party. A Congressional investi 
gation proved that these charges were absurd. The larger 
number of the Negroes who, during this period, were in 
duced to move North, went not to Indiana but to Kansas, 
because of its known attitude towards the black man as 
evidenced by its willingness to bleed in behalf of freedom. 

This movement was an organized one, promoted by two 
men who were not widely known as race leaders but at 
tained distinction as the organizers of one of The exodus 
the most disturbing migrations ever effected to the West - 
among Negroes. They were Henry Adams of Louisiana 


The Negro In Our History 

and Benjamin or "Pap" Singleton of Tennessee. Seeing 
that the Negroes had almost lost the fruits of their emanci 
pation and that there was little hope that their situation 
would be greatly improved, they had organized a commit 
tee which they later increased by the hundreds to circulate 

information as to the intolerable 
oppression of the blacks and the 
opportunities in the West for re 
lief therefrom. In this way, ac 
cording to these promoters, they 
interested 100,000 or 200,000 
Negroes, although not more than 
one-fourth or one-fifth of this 
number actually went West. 

This unusual movement of the 
Negroes threatened the South 
with economic ruin. The think 
ing class saw that the section was 
soon to lose the economic foundation of its prosperity, 
and that if something were not speedily done the land 
would doubtless become a waste place in the wilderness. 
Meetings, therefore, were called among the whites and the 
blacks to induce the latter to remain where they were. The 
most important meeting of this kind was that held at 
Alarm among Vicksburg, Mississippi, on May 6, 1879. 
the planters. There were assembled the representatives of 
the best of both races seeking to reach some conclusion as 
how to deal with the situation. Frank expressions as to 
the causes of the grievances were made on both sides, and 
most persons concerned were willing to make such sacrifices 
of personal feeling and opinion as to remedy the evils 
complained of. 

Unwilling to rely upon moral suasion, however, the whites 
resorted to force to stop the exodus by denying the Negroes 


Finding a Way of Escape 265 

transportation and imprisoning them on false charges; but 
Negroes to the number of many thousands continued their 
way West despite this opposition despite The resort 
even the discouragement of their greatest to force, 
leader, Frederick Douglass, who advised them to the con 
trary, believing that it would be better for the blacks to re 
main in the South where they would have sufficient num 
bers to wield political power. The promoters of the 
movement were fortunate in having the support of Richard 
T. Greener and John M. Langston, who, having sufficient 
foresight to see that the United States Government would 
not soon interfere in behalf of the Negroes in the South, 
advised them to flee from political oppression to a free 
country, considering it a hopeful sign that the blacks had 
passed through that stage of development of appealing to 
philanthropy into that of appealing to themselves. 

This rapid migration was soon checked, but the Negroes 
gradually continued to go West into the industrial centers 
of the Appalachian mountains and into the Southwest. The 
masses of the Negroes, however, became set- The migration 
tied in the South in a condition not much checked, 
better than their former state ; for the planters forgot their 
promises of better treatment just as soon as the exodus 
ceased. The economic adjustment after the Civil War, 
culminating in the resumption of specie payments in 1879, 
moreover, brightened somewhat the dark age through which 
the South was passing. During the eighties and nineties the 
masses of Negroes could do little more than merely eke out 
an existence, but following this period some of them pros 
pered sufficiently to appreciate the difference between free 
and slave labor. The income of the average Negro even 
then, however, was very small. The most fortunate Negro 
tenants or farmers did not generally come to the end of the 
year with more than they needed to keep them while pro- 


The Negro In Our History 

ducing their crop during the next. The rural wage earner 
did well to receive for his toil, from sunrise to sunset, 
twenty-five or thirty cents a day, including board restricted 
to half a gallon of meal and half a pound of fat bacon. Me 
chanics believed that they were highly favored when they 
earned from seventy-five cents to a dollar and a half a day. 
In the midst of such circumstances, the Negroes could 
not establish homes and 
educate their children. 
It was of much assistance 
to the Negroes in the 
Education South, how- 
tried, ever, that the 
North raised considerable 
money and sent some of 
her best citizens to found 
institutions for the en 
lightenment of the freed- 
men. This philanthropic 
scheme presupposed that 
education in the classi 
cal field was the urgent 
need of Negroes, in that 
it was essential to a proper understanding of the prob 
lems of government, and that when this was supplied 
the masses thus enlightened would have an advantage 
by which they could triumph over all opposition. Heed 
ing this call to avail themselves of such opportunities, 
Negroes riot only crowded these institutions, like Howard, 
Fisk, Lincoln, Morehouse, and Atlanta, but began to 
establish higher institutions of their own. Out of these 
schools came not many scholars, but enthusiastic teach 
ers devoted to the enlightenment of their people, a large 
number of race-leading preachers proclaiming religion as 
the solution of the problem, many well informed orators, 


Finding a Way of Escape 


like J. C. Price and William Pickens, and educating con 
troversialists, like Kelly Miller and W. E. B. DuBois. 
Under different conditions these men, no doubt, would have 
been historians, scientists, or mathematicians, but their race 
was passing through the ordeal of kith and kin democracy, 
and their talent had to be impressed into the service of 

exposing the folly of 
the reactionaries promo 
ting the return to me 
dieval civilization in 
proscribing the citizen 
ship of the Negroes. 

The majority of the 
Negroes in the South 
finally be- Resignation 
came set- to fate, 
tied to conditions as 
they were, endeavoring 
to make the most of 
a n undesirable situa 
tion; but Negroes who, 
having experienced men 
tal development, had 
had their hearts fired 
with the desire to enjoy the rights so eloquently set forth 
by their uncompromising leaders, endeavored to escape 
from their political and civic humiliation. To these Ne 
groes of talent it seemed that the South would never 
be a decent place to live in, especially when the North 
turned a deaf ear to the pleadings of their spokesmen 
sent thither to portray to the children of the Negroes friends exactly how the fruits of their victory 
for human rights had been permitted seemingly to perish 
from the earth. After the reconstruction period, the 
North was too busy in developing its industries and had es- 


268 The Negro In Our History 

tablished too close relations with the South to think of 
severing these ties. The prevailing opinion was that the 
South should be permitted to deal with the Negroes as it 
felt disposed. 

As the South, in this position of renewed supremacy, be 
came increasingly intolerant of the talented f reedmen, many 
of them left. To this the whites offered no objection what- 
Cnielty of ever. The exodus of the intelligent Negroes 
the restored was much desired by the southerners, for every 
one migrating diminished the chances of the 
Negro for mental development, a thing which most south 
erners believed spoils the Negro. It has been the policy of 
most Anglo-Saxon nations to keep in ignorance the exploited 
races, that in their ignorant state the one group may be 
arrayed against the other to prevent them from reaching 
the point of self-assertion. In keeping with that same 
policy southerners would not only not encourage but would 
have little dealing with the talented Negroes, and in mak 
ing desire father to the thought, insisted that there were no 
intelligent Negroes. Well might some sections reasonably 
reach this conclusion as to the mental development of the 
Negroes, if it is to be judged by the amount of money 
spent for their education. In its backward state the South 
could not afford large appropriations for education, but in 
most of the districts the Negro public schools were almost a 
mockery, and with the exception of the State industrial 
schools almost no provision at all was made for the higher 
education of the Negro after the undoing of reconstruc 

In the effort to get away from the South there was a 
renewal of the colonization scheme under the leadership of 
Colonization Bishop H. M. Turner. With the encourage- 
again, ment of Senator Morgan of Alabama, who, 
after the reactionaries had well completed the task of 
depriving the Negroes of their rights, felt that they should 

Finding a Way of Escape 


then go to a foreign land to develop independently a nation 
of their own, it seemed that the plan might prove feasible. 
Some thought again of Africa as the place of refuge, but 
the memory of the antebellum struggle of the free Negroes 
to defeat that enterprise 
made that continent too 
frightening to attract 
many. In the early nine 
ties, a few Negroes emi 
grated to Mapimi, Mexico, 
from which, after some 
hardships, they returned 
to their homes in Georgia 
and Alabama. Resorting 
to Africa then, 197 Ne 
groes sailed from Savan 
nah, Georgia, for Liberia 
in 1895. The expedition 
to Liberia was not as un 
successful as that to Mex 
ico, but the deportationists soon discovered in carrying 
out their plan that it is impossible to expatriate a whole 

Many of the talented Negroes who had been conspicuous 
in politics, thereafter decided to yield to the white man s 
control, and devoted themselves to the accumulation oi 
wealth. But, as hell is never full and the eyes Terrorism, 
of man are never satisfied, the mere domination did not 
meet all of the requirements of the degraded class of whites. 
Slavery had made them brutal. They had been accustomed 
to drive, to mutilate, to kill Negroes, and such traits could 
not be easily removed. The reign of terror, ostensibly 
initiated to overthrow the carpet-bag governments by means 
of the Ku Klux Klan, continued, and it became a special 
delight for the poor whites to humiliate and persecute the 

BISHOP H. M. TURNER, a fearless 
spokesman for his people 

270 The Negro In Our History 

Negroes who had acquired education and accumulated some 
wealth. The effort was to make the Negro realize that he 
lives in a white man s country in which law for the Negro is 
the will of the white man with whom he meets. The Negroes 
had to undergo punishment for presuming to assume the 
reins of government during the reconstruction. They had 
to be convinced that this country will never permit another 
such revolution. Further legislation to restrict suffrage in- 
alterably to the whites as a majority, to deprive Negroes of 
the right to serve in the State Militia, to segregate them in 
public conveyances, and exclude them from places of enter 
tainment, soon followed as a necessity for maintaining 
white supremacy, so precarious has its tenure at times 

At the same time the laboring Negroes not only saw them 
selves overwhelmed by a rent and credit system which would 
not pass away, but lost further ground in the new form of 
slavery called peonage, which once had legal sanction in 
Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, 
Peonage. and South Carolina. This was a sort of in 

voluntary servitude by which the laborer is considered 
bound to serve his master until a debt he has contracted 
is paid. The origin of this was in a custom in Mexico, 
and the opportunity lay in the poverty of the Negroes 
who had to borrow from the whites. In working to pay 
these debts they must still borrow to live. As the white 
man was the bookkeeper and his statement of account was 
law in the courts, it was the former master s prerogative 
to say how much the peon owed, to determine exactly when 
he should leave his service, or whether he should ever leave. 

Peons during these years were recruited from another 
source. In collusion with courts arranging with the police 
Peonage and to arrest a required number of Negroes to 
the courts. secure the desired amount in fees and fines, in 
nocent Negroes were commonly arrested, and when fined in 

Finding a Way of Escape 271 

court had to agree to enter the service of some white man, 
who would pay their fines for the opportunity to reduce 
them to involuntary servitude. A brief account from one of 
these peonage districts is sufficient to illustrate this point. 
Passing along the street where a Negro was employed by a 
white man, a sympathetic observer noticed that his employer 
frequently kicked and cuffed the Negro when he was not 
working satisfactorily. Why do you stand this ? Why do 
you not have this man arrested for assault?" inquired the 
observer. "That is just the trouble now," responded the 
Negro.. "I complained to the court when another white 
man beat me, and the judge imposed upon me a fine 
which I could not pay, so I have to work it out in the 
service of this man who paid it to have the opportunity 
to force me to work for him." The Supreme Court of 
the United States undertook to put an end to such legis 
lation in 1911 by declaring the Alabama peonage law un 
constitutional, but in the many districts where there is 
no healthy public opinion to the contrary or where the 
employer is a law unto himself, peonage has continued 
in spite of the feeble effort of the Federal Government 
to eradicate the evil. 

These increasing encroachments convinced many think 
ing Negroes that they should no longer endure such 
humiliation. They could not adequately educate their 
children at public expense, although taxed to Negroes go- 
support the public schools ; they enjoyed little ***& North, 
security in the possession of property, and dared not defend 
their families from insult. Their first thought, then, was 
to go North. For more than a century the North, de 
spite its lack of hospitality for the Negroes, had remained 
in their minds as a place of refuge. From time imme 
morial Negroes had gone to that section, and sometimes 
in considerable numbers. During the nineties and the 
first decade of the present century these numbers decidedly 

272 The Negro In Our History 

increased and brought nearer home to the North the so- 
called race problem. 

There went first the dethroned politicians who, when 
failing to secure employment in Washington, endeavored 
to solve the problem by migration. A few Negroes well 
Politicians established in business, moreover, closed up 

leaving the their affairs and moved out. The educated Ne- 

groes especially the Negro college graduates 

who were imbued with the principles of justice set forth 
by Pickens, Trotter and DuBois had too much appreciation 
for freedom to remain longer where they were politically 
and socially proscribed. A few professional men, who under 
the undesirable conditions were reduced to want, also made 
their escape. Intelligent laborers who knew that they were 
not receiving the proper returns from their labor tired also 
of the ordeal and went in due time to try life in other parts. 
In fact, this slow but steady migration was a gradual draw 
ing off from the South of the most advanced classes, those 
best qualified to lead the race more rapidly toward achieve 
ment. In its backward state, however, the South could not 
appreciate this loss, so willing has it been to pay the high 
cost of race prejudice. 

The undesirable feature of this migration was that it 
was mainly to the cities. The hostility of the trades unions 
to the Negroes was already a handicap rendering their 
The rush presence in large northern cities a problem, 

to cities. an( j th e i ncrease O f numbers resulting from 

this influx aggravated the situation. It was further aggra 
vated in the course of time when, because of the increasing 
popularity of the North, many Negroes "just happened" to 
go. Some went on excursions to Columbus, Indianapolis, 
Chicago, Cleveland, and the like, and never returned South. 
In the North, moreover, educated Negroes had to follow 
drudgery rather than to practice professions or work at 

Finding a Way of Escape 273 

skilled labor as they could in the South. They were willing, 
however, to pay this price for social and political rights, 
hoping that at some time the fates would bring it to pass 
that they would secure an economic foundation in the North. 
The attainment of this end, notwithstanding some encourag 
ing events, however, has been a battle against well-estab 
lished precedents in the effort to maintain the economic su 
premacy of the laboring whites, who feel that they should 
not be compelled to compete with Negroes. In labor, as in 
other things, they contend, the sphere of great remuneration 
must be restricted to the white man, and drudgery to the 

Some systematic efforts were made to break down the 
barriers of these trades unions. "White men, like Eugene V. 
Debs, high in the councils of these bodies, attacked this 
medieval attitude of the white laborers, but to no avail. 
As Negroes in the North and West, therefore, Trades unions, 
were pitted against the trades unions, they embittered much 
the feeling between the races by allying themselves with the 
capitalists to serve as strike breakers. In this case, how 
ever, the trades unions themselves were to be blamed. The 
only time the Negroes could work under such circumstances 
was when the whites were striking, and it is not surprising 
that some of them easily yielded then to the temptation. 
In those unions in which the Negroes were recognized they 
stood with their white coworkers in every instance of mak 
ing a reasonable demand of their employers. Some of these 
unions, however, accepted Negroes merely as a subterfuge 
to prevent them from engaging in strike-breaking. When 
the Negroes appealed for work, identifying themselves as 
members of the union in control, they were turned away 
with the explanation that no vacancies existed, while white 
men were gladly received. 

As a rule, therefore, the Negroes migrating to the North 

274 The Negro In Our History 

had to do menial service. It was pathetic for the traveler 
to see Negroes, once well established in a business in the 
In menial South, reduced to service as porters to earn a 
service. living in the North. The Negroes were so 

scattered in the North that they did not supply the oppor 
tunity for mutual help, and since the whites were not 
willing- to concede economic opportunity the northern Ne 
groes were, so to speak, isolated in the midst of a medieval 
civilization founded on the caste of color. While the migrat 
ing Negroes of intelligence hid their lights under a bushel 
in the North, the illiterate Negroes in the South, in need of 
their assistance in education and enterprise, too often fell 
Results in into the hands of the harpies and sharks, 
the South. many of whom had the assistance of un 
scrupulous Negroes in plundering these unfortunates. 

There came forward then a Negro with a new idea. 
He said to his race : Cast down your buckets where you 
are. In other words, the Negroes must work out their sal 
vation in the South. He was a native of Virginia. He had 
Booker T. keen trained at Hampton and under adverse 
Washington s circumstances had founded a school in Ala 
bama, affording him the opportunity to study 
the Negroes in all their aspects. Seeing that the need of 
the Negro was a foundation in things economic, he came 
forward with the bold advocacy of industrial education of 
the Negroes "in those arts and crafts in which they are 
now employed and in which they must exhibit greater effi 
ciency if they are to compete with the white men." The 
world had heard this before, but never had an educator so 
expounded this doctrine as to move the millions. This man 
was Booker T. Washington. 

The celebrated pronunciamento of Washington was set 
forth in his address at the Atlanta Exposition in 1895, and 
his educational theory and practice have not since ceased 
to be a universal topic. He insisted that since the Negroes 

Finding a Way of Escape 


had to toil they should be taught to toil skillfully. He did 
not openly attack higher education for Negroes, but insisted 
that in getting an education they should be The Atlanta 
sure to get some of that which they can use. Address. 
In other words, the only education worth while is that which 
reacts on one s life in his 
peculiar situation. A 
youth, then, should not be 
educated away from his 
environment, but trained 
to lay a foundation for 
the future in his present 
situation, out of which he 
may emerge into something 
above and beyond his be 

Washington s plan was 
received by the white peo 
ple in the South as a safe 
means by which they could 
promote Negro education 
along lines different from 
those followed in the edu 
cation of the white man, 
so as to make education 
mean one thing for the whites and another for the Negroes. 
The North was at first divided on the ques- Washington s 
tion. The sympathetic class felt that such a P lan accepted, 
policy would reduce the Negroes as a whole to a class of 
laborers and thus bar them from the higher walks of life 
through which the race must come to recognition and promi 
nence. The wealthy class of whites in the North took the 
position that there was much wisdom in Washington s 
policy, and with the encouragement which they have given 
his industrial program, with the millions with which they 



The Negro In Our History 

Have endowed Tuskegee and Hampton, and the support 
given the many other schools established on that basis, 
they, in less than a generation, have brought most northern 
people around to their way of thinking. 

The Negroes, however, with exception of a small minority, 
regarded this policy as a 
surrender to the oppres 
sors who desired to re 
duce the whole race to 
menial service, and they 
proceeded militantly to 
attack Washington, brand- 
Opposition to ing him with 
Washington. t ft e oppro 
brium of a traitor to his 
people. In the course of 
time, however, when the 
South, following the ad 
vice and example of Wash 
ington, reconstructed its 
educational system for 
Negroes and began to sup 
ply these schools with fac 
ulties recommended by 
men interested in indus 
trial education and too 

often by Washington himself, there were gradually elevated 
to leadership many Negroes who, in standing for industrial 
education, largely increased the support of Washington 
among his people. When, moreover, his influence as an 
educator extended into all ramifications of life, even into 
politics, to the extent that he dictated the rise and fall of 
all Negroes occupying positions subject to the will of the 
whites, that constituency was so generally increased that 
before he died there were few Negroes who dared criticize 

W. E. B. DuBois 

Finding a Way of Escape 


him in public or let it be known that they were not in 
sympathy with his work. 

Against this policy, however, there always stood forth 
some Negroes who would not yield ground. The most out 
spoken among these were W. M. Trotter and W. E. B. 
DuBois. These men have had the idea that Trotter and 
the first efforts to secure recognition for the DuBois - 
Negro must come through agitation for higher educa 
tion and political equality. 
What they demand for 
the Negro is the same op 
portunity, the same treat 
ment, generally given the 
white man. To accept any 
thing less means treachery. 
Feeling that Washington s 
position was a compromise 
on these things, they per 
sistently denounced him 
from the rostrum and 
through the press in spite 
of the great personal sac 
rifices which they thereby 
suffered. DuBois lost the 
support of white friends who cannot understand why all 
Negroes do not think alike, and Trotter suffered unusual 
humiliation because he undertook by unlawful means to 
break up one of Washington s meetings in Boston. 

This agitation has exhibited evidences of unusual vitality. 
It has given rise to widely circulated organs which stand 
for equal rights and equal opportunities in short, for a 
square deal for all men regardless of race, color or previous 
condition of servitude. One of these, The Crisis, is now a 
self-supporting popular magazine with a circulation of 
almost 100,000. It is the organ of the National Association 



The Negro In Our History 

for the Advancement of Colored People, a movement 
launched by the remnant of the abolition and reform ele 
ment of the North, in connection with the militant Negroes. 
The personnel of the management of the Association is com 
posed of some of the most prominent Negroes and white men 

and women of the country. 
Among these are Oswald 
Garrison V i 1 1 a r d, the 
grandson of William Lloyd 
Garrison ; Moorfield Storey, 
one of the most prominent 
members of the American 
Bar; Joel E. Spingarn, 
a scholar of national repu 
tation; Jane Addams, the 
social reformer; and A. 
H. Grimke, a fearless ad 
vocate of equality for all. 
While the Association and 
its promoters may have at 
times gone rather far in 
blaming Washington for 
his silence, it has neverthe 
less kept before the Ne 
groes the ideal which they must attain if they are to count 
as a significant factor in this country. 

Washington s long silence as to the rights of the Negro, 
however, did not necessarily mean that he was in favor of 
the oppression of the race. He was aware of the fact that 
An unjust the mere agitation for political rights could 
criticism. not at t h at t j me be O f muc h benefit to the race, 

and that their economic improvement, a thing fundamental 
in real progress, could easily be promoted without incurring 
the disapproval of the discordant elements in the South. He 
may be justly criticized for permitting himself to be drawn 

MOORFIELD STOREY, President of the 
National Association for the Ad 
vancement of Colored People 

Finding a Way of Escape 279 

into certain entanglements in which he of necessity had to 
make some blunders. As an educator, however, he stands 
out as the greatest of all Americans, the only man in the 
Western Hemisphere who has succeeded in effecting a revo 
lution in education. A few centuries hence, when this coun 
try becomes sufficiently civilized to stand the truth about 
the Negro, history will record that Booker T. Washington, 
in trying to elevate his oppressed people, so admirably 
connected education with the practical things of life that 
he effected such a reform in the education of the world as 
to place himself in the class with Pestalozzi, Froebel and 
Herbart. The Negroes as a whole have little to say now 
against his educational policy, seeing that the white people 
have realized that industrial education is not only a good 
thing for the Negro but a blessing to the white man. The 
whites have accordingly proceeded to spend millions of dol 
lars for buildings and equipment to secure these advantages 
to their youth. Washington s advocacy of industrial educa 
tion, moreover, in spite of all that has been said, was not 
a death blow to higher education for the Negro. That 
movement has lived in spite of opposition, and Wash 
ington himself frequently stated that industrial education, 
as he emphasized it, was for the masses of the people who 
had to toil. He did not object to higher education, knowing 
that the race had to have men to lead it onward. 



DURING the years when the Negroes have had all sorts 
of advice as to how they might emerge from the muddle of 
controversy about the best solution of their problems, they 
An era of have not all spent their time in academic dis- 
progress. cussion. Building upon the foundation that 

they made before the Civil War, the Negroes have developed 
into one of the most constructive elements in our economic 
system. 1 The census of 1910 shows that although the Ne 
groes constitute about thirty per cent of the population of 
the South, more than half of the agricultural laborers of 
that section are Negroes. In the main, moreover, the Ne 
groes are useful citizens, showing little tendency to become 
peddlers, agents, and impostors who make their living rob 
bing the people. On the corners of the streets in some cities 
there may be found a few Negroes who are not disposed to 
work for a living, but these constitute a small fraction of 
one per cent of the Negro population of the United States. 

The census reports will help us further to determine 
what the Negroes in this country have been doing. In 1910, 
5,192,535, or 71 per cent, of the 7,317,922 Negroes between 

i The statistics bearing on the progress of the Negro are found 
in the United States Census Reports. Other valuable facts may be 
obtained from Monroe N. Work s Negro Year Book and the files of 
The Crisis. There is also Mr. Henry E. Baker s informing article on 
The Negro in the Field of Invention (in the Journal of Negro His 
tory, II, 21-36). Dr. Thomas J. Jones s Negro Education in two 
volumes throws light on what has been going on in that field during 
the last half century. 


Achievements In Freedom 281 

the ages of 10 years and over were engaged in agriculture, 
forestry and animal husbandry. In the number employed 
in agriculture are included 893,370 farmers, Occupations 
planters and overseers ; 218,972 were owners, of N^ 068 - 
672,964 tenants, and 1,434 managers. Owners free of debt 
possessed 8,835,857 acres, owners having mortgaged farms 
had 4,011,491, and part owners 2,844,188. There were 
12,876,308 acres operated by cash tenants; 13,691,494 
by share tenants, and 349,779 by managers. This area of 
42,279,510 acres will appear more realistic when one real 
izes that it is as large as New England, or Belgium and 
Holland combined. 

The field in which most Negroes have been employed is 
agriculture, and next to that domestic and personal service. 
While in most of the unskilled occupations the Negroes 
constitute a larger percentage than their per- Unskilled 
centage of the entire population, the increasing labor - 
number of skilled laborers has reduced the percentage of 
unskilled laborers from a very high mark to about seventy 
per cent. The standard of the unskilled laborer, moreover, 
has been raised, peonage has been gradually giving way to 
a system of wages, the intelligence of the workmen has in 
creased, and the Negro laborers have become so dependable 
that despite the large influx of immigrants they have been 
able to withstand the competition. So much improvement 
in the Negro unskilled laborer has been made during the 
last generation that his increasing efficiency has rendered 
difficult the distinction between skilled and unskilled labor. 

Eecent statistics as to the number of Negroes employed 
at skilled labor will further emphasize this point. Accord 
ing to the census of 1910 there were among the males 12,401 
brick and stone masons, 9,727 blacksmiths, skilled 
8,035 glaziers, painters and varnishers, 6,175 labor - 
plasterers, 5,188 locomotive firemen, 4,802 stationary engi 
neers, 3,296 machinists and millwrights, 2,304 coopers, 

The Negro In Our History 

Achievements In .Freedom 


2,285 plumbers, and gas and steam fitters, 2,156 molders, 
and 4,652 tailors. At the same time there were among the 
females, 38,148 dressmakers and seamstresses, 8,267 opera 
tors in cigar and tobacco factories, and 6,163 employed in 
general manufacturing. 

Building upon these achievements in labor, the Negroes 
have towered higher and higher in the professions. In 1910 


one Negro out of every 146 was engaged in some profes 
sional pursuit, whereas one white person in Negroes in 
every 51 was thus engaged. The proportion Professions, 
of clergymen among Negroes exceeded that among the 
whites, but in the other cases the whites showed the excess 
of the ratio of population to professional workers. While it 
appears that professions among Negroes are still under 
manned, a decided increase in this direction has been noted 
during the last generation. It means a great deal to be able 
after fifty years of freedom to produce 29,485 teachers, 

284 The Negro In Our History 

5,606 musicians and teachers of music, 3,077 physicians and 
surgeons, 478 dentists, 798 lawyers, 123 chemists, 329 
artists, sculptors and teachers of art, 247 authors, editors 
and reporters, 59 architects, and 237 civil engineers. That 
they have in half a century achieved enough in the profes 
sions to bring them within the range of comparison with 
the whites is striking evidence of the ability of the Negro 
to meet the test of competition. 

This growing usefulness of the Negro in the new fields has 
meant a corresponding reduction in the numbers of those 
disposed to waste their time. The criminal class of the 
Less crime. Negroes in America, therefore, has decidedly 
improved, despite the reports to the contrary. These false 
alarms are based largely on unwarranted charges growing 
out of the convict lease system and the imposition of unjust 
fines for ordinary misdemeanors and such petty offenses 
as vagrancy. The attitude of the Negroes themselves to 
ward maintaining the peace is well reflected in their efforts 
to better conditions by establishing law and order leagues 
working in cooperation with the local governments. To 
further this cause the Negroes have had the cooperation of 
the Southern Sociological Congress and the University Race 
Commission, which, although far from being unbiased, have 
done some good. These organizations are endeavoring to 
investigate the causes of the crimes of the whites against 
Negroes, as well as crimes of the latter. Both races have 
been much aided by the abolition of the liquor traffic. 

The actual forces which have in general effected the im 
provement in the Negro race, however, have been strictly 
Negro organizations themselves. Chief among these are the 
Negro churches, social welfare agencies, and schools. In 
Churches as 1906 the Negroes of white denominations had 
factors. 6,210 churches with 514,571 communicants, 

5,330 Sunday schools, 293,292 scholars, and property worth 
$12,107,655. The independent Negro denominations had 

Achievements In Freedom 285 

33,220 churches with 3,789,898 communicants, 30,999 Sun 
day schools, 1,452,095 scholars, arid property valued at 
$45,191,422. These churches are in the main Baptist and 
Methodist. While the latter are divided into three groups, 
known as the African Methodist Episcopal Church, the 
African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, and the Colored 
Methodist Episcopal Church, the Baptists had until the 
schism of 1916 only one national organization, exercising 
loose supervision over the whole denomination. Although 
smaller in numbers, however, these various Methodist 
churches have, by their well constructed organizations, been 
able to accomplish much in the extension of religion and 
education through their thirty-six well-informed bishops 
and enterprising general officers. The work of other de 
nominations, like the Episcopalians, the Presbyterians, Con- 
gregationalists and the Catholics, has also been very effective 
in Negro uplift wherever they have secured a following. 

Cooperating with these have come the 3,077 physicians, 
surgeons, and dentists, preachers of health, supplementing 
the work of the ministers of the gospel. They have been able 
to call the attention of entire communities to Physicians, 
the necessity of observing the laws of health and of making 
the community a decent place to live in. These well-trained 
men have therefore been able to supplement the work of 
the Anti-Tuberculosis League and the American Hygiene 
Association and to extend the operations of the annual 
school conferences held at Atlanta University, Hampton, 
and Tuskegee. So much good has been recently accom 
plished by the staff of workers lecturing to the soldiers in 
the camps on social hygiene that national bodies promoting 
health are now paying more attention to the problems of 
Negroes. As a result of this persistent struggle against 
io-norance, poverty and negligence, the mortality rate 
among Negroes has decreased and much improvement has 
been noted in their physique. 

286 The Negro In Our History 

To do for the race some of the things which the church 
has not accomplished, social welfare work was undertaken 
among Negroes decades ago. The first colored Young Men s 
Christian Association was organized in Washington, D. C., 
Work of the in 1853 by Anthony Bowen, a man of color ; 
Y. M. 0. A. t h e secon( j j n Charleston, South Carolina, in 
1866 ; and the third in New York City in 1867. The first 
colored Student Association was organized at Howard Uni 
versity in 1869. E. V. C. Cato, of the New York City 
Branch, attended the Montreal Convention in 1867 as the 
first Negro delegate thus to serve. In 1876 George D. 
Brown, ex-Confederate soldier, was appointed to supervise 
the Negro Branches of the Young Men s Christian Asso 
ciation throughout the country. In 1888, however, the 
lamented William A. Hunton, a man of color, who had been 
appointed as general secretary of the Negro Young Men s 
Christian Association of Norfolk, Virginia, was appointed 
to succeed Mr. Brown, and thereafter the work has been 
under the supervision of Negro secretaries. 

The work was greatly extended with some difficulty, and 
was given much needed impetus by the accession to the 
ranks of enterprising secretaries laboring in many cities 
and in most Negro schools of the South. Interesting here 
The growth. and there persons who were prejudiced against 
the movement because of the failure to understand it, these 
gentlemen gradually worked their way into the very hearts 
of indifferent communities until in almost all of the large 
cities where Negroes are found in considerable numbers, 
business and professional men of both races, thanks to the 
noble example set by the large donations of Julius Kosen- 
wald, have united to establish for Negroes branches of the 
Young Men s Christian Association, where they enjoy a 
comradeship and temporary home-like life which the 
transient of color could not theretofore find in those cities. 
Recently an effort has been made to provide for young 

Achievements In Freedom 287 

women in these centers the same facilities, and the success 
of the useful branches of the Young Women s Christian 
Association already established in New York, Washington, 
Louisville and St. Louis, has been sufficient encouragement 
to the authorities in charge to provide elsewhere similar 
facilities for women of color. 

As a result of the work of these agencies the home life of 
the Negroes has been decidedly improved. Every Negro, 
of course, has not heeded the advice of his friends, and the 
fact that some have lagged behind while oth- improvements 
ers have gone forward makes it no longer ^ homes - 
possible to speak of all Negroes as belonging to two classes, 
as it was before the Civil War when they were known as 
slaves and free persons of color. Negro homes now show 
the same difference in standards as found among the whites. 
The majority of Negroes have advanced beyond the point of 
being satisfied with a one-roomed hut conspicuous by its lack 
of ordinary comforts. They are buying land and building 
houses of several rooms. An effort is made to decorate 
the walls and supply the home with adequate furniture. 
Negro children attending school read the latest books, news 
papers, and magazines. Where the evidence of such progress 
is not manifest it is possible in most cases to show that, 
because of economic conditions, the Negroes concerned have 
been too much handicapped by poverty to improve their 
situation as they would like. Recent improvements in their 
economic situation, however, have made these conditions 
exceptions to the rule. 

For the remaking of Negroes most credit must be given 
to the schools at work among them. The teacher has made 
the school, the school has figured largely in the making of 
the home, and the home has produced a new The Efforts 
civilization. While, despite the efforts of of schools, 
kindly disposed educators like Kuffner, Curry, and Dillard, 
the facilities for education offered Negroes in the public 


The Negro In Our History 

schools of the South have been unusually meager, hardly 
extending beyond that of teaching them to read and write, 
there have been offered in schools maintained in the South 
by northern philanthropy opportunities for so much en 
lightenment that teachers going out from these institutions 
have come to their people like missionaries inspired to 
preach a new gospel to the lowly. Lincoln and Wilberforce 

Universities set a high 
standard for the educa 
tion of the Negroes prior 
to the Civil War, and 
Howard University, under 
its distinguished founder, 
General 0. O. Howard, 
undertook to equip for 
leadership a number of 
youths of color so to toil 
for the enlightenment of 
their people as to mark a 
new epoch in their prog 
ress. A large number of 
other philanthropists hav 
ing the same ideals as the 
founders of these institu 
tions, established others, like Fisk, Atlanta, Tougaloo, 
Talladega, Morehouse, Livingstone, Knoxville, and Straight. 
Industrial Then came Hampton, Tuskegee and the like, 
schools. directing attention primarily to the educa 

tion of the masses in things fundamental so as to enable 
the youth to begin with life where he is and to make of 
it what his opportunities will permit. 

Meeting thus in a way almost every need for Negro edu 
cation, offering facilities for training of all sorts, the Negro 
schools have been very successful because of the impetus 
given them by such philanthropists as William H. Baldwin, 


Achievements In Freedom 


Jr., Robert C. Ogden, H. H. Rogers, John D. Rockefeller, 
Andrew Carnegie, and Julius Rosenwald, through their lib 
eral contributions to the establishment and the Aid f rom 
development of various institutions. While philanthro- 
education may at times have been ill assorted, P ists - 
in that persons have without giving due consideration to 
their capacity and opportunities wasted time undertaking to 
master things to which they were ill adapted and which 
they would never have to 
do, the readjustment has 
worked out in such a way 
that Negroes, like the 
whites, now have oppor 
tunities to equip them 
selves for whatever they 
feel disposed to do, and 
in life they have exhibited 
the same mental endow 
ment found among the 
people of all other races. 
The good work of these 

institutions has been ef- ANDREW CARNEGIE. The donor of 
fective in putting the Ne- $600,000 to Tuskegee. The first 
gro on his feet, so to speak, 
enabling the Negro to do 

for himself what the thou- 

philanthropist to set the ex 
ample of giving large sums 
of money for the eleva 
tion and development of 

the Negro race. 
6f Sympathetic and Copyright by Marceau. 

benevolent whites of the missionary spirit had to do for 
the Negroes in leaving their homes in the North. Out of 
these schools have come thousands of Ne- Trained to 
groes of scholarly tendencies who have, in de- leadership, 
voting their time and means to the study of educational 
problems and school administration, equipped themselves 
for leadership in education in the South. It has for some 
time been a matter of much regret that white persons in 

The Negro In Our History 

JOHN I). ROCKEFELLER AND HIS Sox. Through appropriations of the 
General Education Board and the Laura Spelman Rockefeller Me 
morial large sums have come from these philanthropists to agencies 
engaged in the uplift and the education of the Negro. 

Copyright by Underwood & Underwood. 

Achievements In Freedom 


charge of schools maintained by philanthropy in the South 
have failed to recognize this ability of the Negro and still 
adhere to the policy of restricting them to subordinate posi 
tions. Negroes have borne it grievously that they have had 
to contend with white persons who feel that whenever a 
Negro is given a position of responsibility he needs careful 

watching or supervision by some 
white man that it may be done 
in keeping with some estab 
lished policy. 

The Negroes have not only 
learned lessons in religion, edu 
cation and health, progress In 
but have shown business, 
unusual progress in the business 
world. They have accumulated 
so much property in the rural 
districts that they constitute a 
desirable class of small farmers. 
R. R. MOTON, the Principal I n the cities in which recently 

there has taken place the concen 
tration of large numbers of Negroes, enterprising men of 
color are gradually taking over business formerly monopo 
lized by whites. Near a Negro church you will find an 
undertaker of color. In almost any Negro urban com 
munity there is a successful real estate dealer, a reliable 
contractor, an insurance office, and sometimes a bank. So 
popular has it become for Negroes to deal with their own 
people, that white men owning business in Negro sections 
have learned to employ considerable Negro help. 

The Negro in business, however, is not a new thing. The 
point to be noted here is the unusual progress of the race in 
this field during recent years. It is more Unusual 
than encouraging, moreover, to observe how achievements, 
easily the Negroes have learned the lesson of pooling their 

292 The Negro In Our History 

efforts in larger enterprises. To promote the economic 
progress of the race, Negroes have been wise enough to or 
ganize several efficient agencies. The first of these to attain 
importance was the National Business League founded by 
Dr. Booker T. Washington. There are also the National 
Negro Bankers Association, the National Association of 
Funeral Directors and the National Negro Retail Mer 
chants Association. Negro fraternal organizations, al 
though established for social purposes, have in recent years 
taken on a business aspect in providing for the purchase 
of property and the insurance of the lives of their mem 
bers. In some parts of the South the Negroes use no other 
insurance, and the managers of this work constitute in 
reality an industrial insurance company. The Negroes 
have about fifty banks and ten insurance companies, three 
of which are regular old line life insurance companies. 
In 1910, 3,208 Negroes were employed in banking and 
brokerage, 2,604 in insurance, and 1,095 in real estate. 

Among these captains of industry thus pressing forward 
should be mentioned John W. Lewis, President of the In 
dustrial Savings Bank and the Whitelaw Apartment House 
Captains of Corporation of Washington; Samuel W. 
industry. Rutherford, secretary of the National Benefit 

Association of the same city; Isaiah T. Montgomery, the 
capitalist of Mound Bayou, Mississippi; John Merrick, 
founder of the North Carolina Mutual and Provi 
dent Association ; R. L. Smith, the organizer of the Farm 
ers Improvement Society of Texas; Heman E. Perry, 
President of the Standard Life Insurance Company 
of Atlanta; and the late Madame C. J. Walker, the manu 
facturer of toilet articles, out of which she accumulated 
more than a million dollars worth of property. The Ne 
groes in the United States now own property worth more 
than a billion dollars. 

In the midst of the busy bustle and the economic de- 

Achievements In Freedom 293 

velopment of the United States since the Civil War the 
Negro has not only demonstrated his ability to accumulate 
a portion of the world s goods, but has by his inventive 
genius contributed much toward the economic inventive 
progress of the country. As to exactly how s enlus - 
many Negroes have appeared in the field of invention we 
are still in doubt. The United States Patent Office has not 
in all cases kept a record as to the race of the applicants. 
While in many instances the racial connection has been 
easily determined, an investigation has shown that many 
inventors of color have not disclosed facts to this effect be 
cause the value of the invention might thereby be depre 
ciated. By correspondence with patent attorneys and the 
inventors themselves it has been established as a fact that 
there are in the United States Patent Office a record of 1,500 
inventions made by Negroes. This number, no doubt, is 
only a fraction of those which have been actually assigned 
to persons of color. 

Some of these inventions have been remarkable. Prob 
ably the most significant one of them is that of a machine 
for lasting shoes invented by Jan E. Matzeliger, a Negro 
born in Dutch Guiana in 1852. Early in his Matzeliger. 
youth Matzeliger came to this country and served as an 
apprentice at the cobbler s trade in Philadelphia and in 
Lynn, Massachusetts. Undergoing unusual hardships which 
undermined his health, Matzeliger applied his brain to 
working out a labor-saving device by which his trade might 
be relieved from drudgery. He invented, therefore, a last 
ing machine which adjusted the shoe, arranged the leather 
over the sole, and drove in the nails. Matzeliger died in 
1889, in his thirty-seventh year, before he could realize the 
value of his invention. The patent was bought by Sydney 
W. Winslow, who, upon the advantages derived from this 
machine, established the well-known United Shoe Machinery 
Company, which absorbed over 40 smaller corporations. 

294 The Negro In Our History 

This company is operated now with a capital stock of more 
than $20,000,000, employing 5,000 operators in factories 
covering more than twenty acres of ground. Within the 
twenty years from the time of its incorporation its product 
increased from $220,000 to $242,631,000 and the shoes ex 
ported increased from 1,000,000 to 11,000,000. As a result 
the cost of shoes decreased fifty per cent, the wages of the 
operators decidedly increased, the working hours dimin 
ished, and laboring conditions improved. 

Some other inventions of Negroes of less consequence 
were of much value and deserve mention. J. H. Dickinson 
and S. L. Dickinson, both of New Jersey, have been granted 
Valuable a dozen patents for mechanical appliances used 

inventions. j n player piano machinery. W. B. Purvis of 
Philadelphia has accumulated much wealth by his inven 
tions of machinery for making paper bags, most of these 
having been sold to the Union Paper Bag Company of New 
York. A. B. Albert, a native of Louisiana, invented a few 
years ago a cotton picking machine. Charles V. Richey 
of Washington, D. C., invented and patented several de 
vices for registering calls and detecting the unauthorized 
use of the telephone. Shelby J. Davidson invented a me 
chanical tabulator or adding machine ; Robert A. Pelham, a 
pasting machine ; and Andrew P. Hilyer, two hot-air regis 
ter attachments. Benjamin F. Jackson of Massachusetts in 
vented a heat apparatus, a gas burner, an electrotypers 
furnace, a steam boiler, a trolley wheel controller, a tank 
signal, and a hydrocarbon burner system. Frank J. Ferrell 
of New York obtained about a dozen patents for improve 
ments in valves for steam engines. George W. Murray, a 
former member of Congress from South Carolina, patented 
eight inventions of agricultural implements. Henry 
Kreamer of New York made seven different inventions in 
steam traps. William Douglass of Arkansas secured six 
patents for inventions of harvesting machinery. James 

NO. 274,207. 

Achievements In Freedom 


PATENTED MAR. 20, 1553 


296 The Negro In Our History 

Doyle of Pittsburgh devised the automatic serving system 
so as to dispense with the use of waiters in cafes. 

Fred J. Lowden, known to fame as one of the Fisk 
Jubilee Singers, patented in 1893 a fastener for the meeting 
Useful rails of sashes, and a key fastener the fol- 

appliances. lowing year. J. L. Pickering of Haiti, 
James Smith of California, W. G. Madison of Iowa, and 
H. E. Hooter of Missouri, have been granted patents for 
inventions in airships. No less significant, moreover, was 
the patent, in 1897, of Andrew J. Beard, of Alabama, 
for an automatic car-coupling device, sold to a New 
York car company for m,ore than $50,000. William H. 
Johnson of Texas invented a successful device for overcom 
ing dead center in motion, one for a compound engine and 
another for a water boiler. While keeping a hotel in Bos 
ton, Joseph Lee patented three inventions for kneading 
dough. Brinay Smart of Tennessee invented a number of 
reverse valve gears. J. W. Benton of Kentucky invented a 
derrick for hoisting heavy weights. John T. Parker in 
vented screws for tobacco presses with which he established 
a thriving business as the Ripley Foundry and Machine 
Company of Ripley, Ohio. 

The most useful inventor with a career extending into the 
twentieth century, however, was Granville T. Woods, who 
doubtless surpassed most men in his field in the number and 
Granville T. the variety of his devices. .He began in Cin- 
Woods. cinnati, Ohio, in 1884, where he obtained his 

first patent on a steam boiler furnace. Then came an 
amusement machine apparatus in 1880, an incubator in 
1900, and electrical air brakes in 1902, 1903, and 1905. He 
then directed his attention to telegraphy, producing several 
patents for transmitting messages between moving trains, 
and also a number of transmitters. He thereafter invented 
fifteen appliances having to do with electrical railways and 
a number of others for electrical control and distribution. 

Achievements In Freedom 


To further his interests he organized the Woods Electrical 
Company, which took over by assignment all of his early 
patents. As in the course of time, however, he found a 
larger market for his devices with the more prosperous 
corporations in the United States, the records of the patent 
office show the assignment of a large number of his inven 
tions to the General Electric Company of New York, the 
Westinghouse Air Brake Com 
pany of Pennsylvania, the Amer 
ican Bell Telephone Company of 
Boston, and the American En 
gineering Company of New York. 
During this period of his larger 
usefulness he had the cooperation 
of his brother, Lyates Woods, who 
himself invented a number of 
such appliances of considerable 
commercial value. 

Another inventor of conse 
quence was Elijah J. McCoy. He was unique in that 
he was the first man to direct attention to the need for 
facilitating 1 the lubrication of machinery. Elijah J. 
His first invention was patented in 1872 as McCoy. 
a lubricating cup. From that day his fame as an inven 
tor of this useful appliance went throughout this country 
and abroad. In responding to the need for still further 
improvements in this work, he patented about fifty dif 
ferent inventions having to do with the lubricating of 
machinery. His lubricating cup became of general use on 
the leading railroads in the United States and abroad and 
on the vessels on the high seas. In his work, however, Mr. 
McCoy was not restricted to lubricating machinery. He 
patented a variety of devices for other purposes, and he was 
long active in the production of other mechanical appliances 
in demand in the industrial world. 


298 The Negro In Our History 

The achievements of the Negroes in this field become 
much worthier of mention when one takes into consideration 
the hard problems of the inventor of color. In this country 
Difficulties it: nas not Deen a ver y easy matter for white 

of the men with ample protection of the law to se- 


cure to themselves by patents the full enjoy 
ment of the fruits of their own labor. The achievements of 
Eli Whitney and Robert Fulton are cases in evidence. 
Henry A. Bowman, a Negro inventor of Worcester, Mas 
sachusetts, therefore, found himself facing the same diffi 
culty. After he had established a thriving business on the 
basis of his invention of a new method of making flags, he 
discovered that a New York firm was outstripping him by 
using his invention. As he was unable to hire competent 
attorneys to protect his interests, he was soon compelled to 
abandon his business. The experience of E. A. Robinson of 
Chicago is another case in evidence. He invented a num 
ber of devices, such as the casting composite for car wheels, 
a trolley wheel, a railway switch and a rail. His patents, 
however, were infringed upon by two large corporations, 
the American Car and Foundry Company and the Chicago 
City Railway Company. To restrain these corporations 
from appropriating his property to their use, he instituted 
proceedings in the local courts and finally in the Supreme 
Court of the United States, but hitherto he has been unable 
to have his patent protected. 

Exhibiting this same sort of genius ever manifesting itself 
despite difficulties, Negroes have shown in other fields 
evidences of unusual attainment. In music the world has 
The Negro seen the lowly life and higher aspirations of 
in music. the Negro in j w and F w Work, Will 

Marion Cook, Nathaniel Dett, and Harry Burleigh, fol 
lowing in the footsteps of Samuel Coleridge Taylor. In 
sculpture the race has been well represented by Meta Vaux 
Warrick Fuller, who won fame by her first work in clay 

Achievements In Freedom 299 

in the Philadelphia School of Industrial Art. She studied 
in Paris, where she attracted the attention of the great 
sculptor, Rodin. In 1893 she exhibited the highly prized 
model of art, The Wretched, her masterpiece. She has since 
added some other works, The Dancing Girl, The Wrestlers, 
and Carrying the Dead Body. In the same field has also 
appeared Mrs. May Howard Jackson, whose works have 
elicited honorable mention in many circles. E. M. Bannis 
ter, William A. Harper, and William E. Scott have at 
tracted considerable attention by their paintings. 

The most distinguished Negro in the field of art, how 
ever, is Henry 0. Tanner, who, with the white artist, Sar 
gent, represents the best America has produced in painting. 
He had little encouragement in this field, but Henry O. 
early attracted attention by The Bagpipe Tanner. 
Lesson, portraying a workman sitting on a wheelbarrow ob 
serving the efforts of a youth on a musical instrument. 
Lacking in this country the atmosphere conducive to the 
development of the best in man, Mr. Tanner went to the 
city of Paris in 1891 where, under the instruction of Jean 
Paul Laurens and Benjamin Constant, he mastered the 
principles of art. There, in contact with men in his own 
sphere, he has developed into one of the greatest artists of 
his time. 

His first painting of value was exhibited in 1894. The 
following year he completed The Young Sabot Maker, but 
it was not until 1896 that with the encouragement given 
him by the great artist Gerome Mr. Tanner won recog 
nition as a painter. In 1897, however, his Raising of 
Lazarus attracted so much attention far and wide that 
thereafter there was little doubt in the circles of art as to 
the greatness of this man. This picture was awarded the 
gold medal by the French government and placed in the 
Louvre. In 1898 he presented to the public The Annun 
ciation at the Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia, elicit- 

300 The Negro In Our History 

ing unusually favorable comment. His Judas, presented to 
the public in 1899, was bought by the Carnegie Institute of 
Pittsburgh. That same year Nicodemus, awarded the Wal 
ter Lippincott prize of $300, was purchased by the Pennsyl 
vania Academy of Fine Arts. For his Daniel in the Lion s 
Den he was awarded second class medals at the Universal 
Exposition in Paris in 1900, at the Pan-American Expo 
sition in 1901, and at the St. Louis Exposition in 1904. 
In 1906 his The Disciples at Emmaus was awarded the 

H. 0. TANNER S Christ and Nicodemus 

second gold medal and purchased by the French Govern 
ment. That same year his The Disciples at the Tomb was 
declared the best painting at the annual exhibition of art 
in Chicago and was awarded the N. W. Harris prize of 
$300. In 1908 appeared The Wise and Foolish Virgins, 
which was characterized as a masterpiece of a sincere artist. 
As a painter, Mr. Tanner has directed his attention 
largely to religious and lowly life, as evidenced by the names 
of his paintings. He no doubt owes this attitude to the 
fact that he is the son of a bishop of the African Methodist 

Achievements In Freedom 301 

Episcopal Church, and early in life was encouraged to 
apply himself to theology. As an artist his productions 
have a reverent atmosphere, and his pictures are clean-cut 
and luminous. In his paintings there are subtle power, 
purity of line, and thorough charm, with sentiment pre 
vailing over technique. While the shades are luminous, the 
coloring is neither heavy nor muddy. "He always brings 
out of all his work," says one, "an admirable dramatic 
sentiment given full value and fully expressed." 

In the field of literature the Negroes are sometimes con 
sidered as beginners, but much progress in this field is evi 
dent. Kelly Miller, W. E. B. DuBois arid William Pickens 
have done well in controversial literature. In literature. 
George W. Williams, John W. Cromwell and Booker T. 
Washington have made contributions to history. Following 
in the wake of Jupiter Hammon, Phyllis Wheatley and 
Frances E. W. Harper, writers of interesting verse, Paul 
Laurence Dunbar came before the public in the early nine 
ties as a man endowed with the unusual gift of interpreting 
the lowly life of the Negro. As an elevator boy in a hotel, 
writing a few lines in dialect, he himself did not realize 
his poetic genius. Succeeding, however, in having a few of 
these published in daily papers and magazines, he attracted 
attention. It was not long before William Dean Howells, a 
contemporary, became interested in his works and pro 
claimed him to the world as a poet worthy of the consider 
ation given Whittier, Lowell and Longfellow. The rise 
Dunbar had fortunately reached that unusual of Dwrt 3 *- 
stage in the development of a belated people of having his 
education react upon his environment. He saw the Ne 
gro as he is, saw something beneath the surface of his mere 
brogue, in fact, saw a philosophy for which the world 
wanted an interpretation. This interpretation came in his 
first book, Oak and Ivy, and was still better exhibited in 
his second work, Majors and Minors, appearing in 1895. 


The Negro In Our History 



Very soon then we hear of him such comments as that com 
ing from Richard Watson Gilder, saying that Dunbar is the 
first black man to feel the life of the Negro esthetically and 
to express it lyrically. 

Dunbar made an attempt at novel writing, as appears in 
his The Uncalled. This was a character study upon which 

fortunately his reputation 
as a literary man does not 
rest, for it does not come 
up to the standard of his 
verse. Unstinted praise 
awaited him upon his 
publication of Lyrics of 
Lowly Life, Folks from 
Dixie, Lyrics of the Hearth- 
side, Poems of Cabin and 
Field, The Strength of 
Gideon, The Love of Lan- 
dry, The Fanatics, The 
Sport of the Gods, Lyrics 
of Love and Laughter 
and Candle Lighting Time. 
Some of the popular poems 
in this collection which are 
worthy of special mention 
are When Malindy Sings, 
When the Co n Pone s Hot, The Party and The Poet and 
his Song. 

His success as a literary man was due to his originality. 
While there had appeared from time to time scores of 
whites and blacks who had undertaken to write verse in 
Negro dialect, Dunbar was the first to put into it such 
thought and make of it such a portraiture of the feeling 
and the aspirations of the Negroes as to give his work the 
stamp of originality. While he was always humorous, his 


Achievements In Freedom 303 

poetry showed deep pathos and sympathy. With no- prob 
lems to solve and no peculiar type of character to represent 
he went into the Negro life, saw it as it was, and emerged 
portraying it with living characters exhibiting the elas 
ticity, spirit, tone, and naturalness in the life about him. 

In life he was respected and known throughout this coun 
try and abroad. In 1897 he visited England, where be 
cause of his fame as a poet he was received with marked 
honor. Upon returning to this country his literary en 
gagements became such that he could devote himself en 
tirely to work in his field. His health early began to de 
cline, however, and he died at the age of thirty-four at his 
home in Dayton, Ohio, which, thanks to the interest of 
sympathetic persons of both races, is now maintained as a 
monument to remain as a museum in honor of the poet, 
Paul Laurence Dunbar. 

Since the days of Dunbar a number of other Negro 
writers of prominence have considerably interested the pub 
lic. Among these should be mentioned Angelina W. 
Grimke, a woman of poetic insight ; Benjamin Other writers. 
Brawley, an author of many interests ; Jessie R. Fauset, a 
writer of varying purpose; Georgia Douglas Johnson, 
whose interesting poems have recently appeared as The 
Heart of a Woman; Leslie Pinkney Hill, distinguished by 
his Wings of Oppression; Joseph Seaman Cotter, known to 
the public through his poems contributed to various maga 
zines and his collection entitled the Band of Gideon; and 
James Weldon Johnson, whose invaluable works are col 
lected in the volume, Fifty Years and Other Poems. These 
authors are at their best in writing poems which have no 
bearing on the. life of the Negro. In this field they have ex 
hibited evidences of the thought, feeling and imagination 
found in the best literature. In taking up Negro life, how 
ever, they have not reached the standard of Dunbar. Their 
difficulty has been that because of sufferings from social 

304 The Negro In Our History 

proscription in the white men s world they have faced their 
task with a problem to solve and, unlike Paul Laurence 
Dunbar, who went into life and merely portrayed what he 
saw, they prejudice their readers against them by a pre 
mature introduction to an unpleasant atmosphere. 

The most remarkable writer of Negro blood since Dunbar 
is William Stanley Braithwaite, who as a writer is not a 
Negro. Although realizing the fact that the race has ob- 
Braithwaite. stacles to surmount, that it is in a great strug 
gle, and that the battle is being hard fought, Mr. Braith 
waite has by his literary production and criticism won much 
consideration for the Negroes, not by singing of their woes, 
but by demonstrating that the Negro intellect is capable of 
the same achievements as that of the whites. In his poems, 
his annual publication, the Anthology of Magazine Verse, 
and his numerous literary criticisms appearing from 
time to time in the leading publications of this country, Mr. 
Braithwaite, although a man of African blood, is accepted 
as one of the foremost literary critics of our day. 



WHILE the Negroes were suffering from persecution in 
the South and economic proscription in the North, the 
world plunged almost unexpectedly into a universal strug 
gle which materially affected the interests of A factor 
the blacks. 1 The heir-presumptive to the in the war. 
Austro-Hungarian throne was shot at Serajevo June 28, 
1914. Blaming the Serbs for this crime, the Austrian gov 
ernment sent Serbia an ultimatum demanding that the 
offenders be brought to trial by a tribunal in which Austria 
should be represented. Serbia refused to yield to these 
demands and was supported by Russia in this position ; but 
Germany upheld Austria, feeling that if such an act passed 
without punishment, it would soon be impossible for the 
crowned heads of Europe to maintain their empires. Eng 
land, France, and Italy recommended that the matter be 
adjusted by arbitration, but Germany, contending that 
mobilization of the Russian army was in reality a decla 
ration of war against her, declared war on Russia the first 
of August and on France two days later. England sym 
pathized with France, to which she was attached by various 
ties, and accordingly entered the war against Germany. 

iThe history of the World War has not yet been written. There 
have appeared several subscription volumes for the purpose of making 
money rather than to publish the whole truth, and they have been 
extensively sold. As to the role of the Negro in this drama there is 
but scant reliable information. Emmett J. Scott has written a 
popular account of the achievements of the Negroes in this struggle, 
but it is hoped that this may soon be foHowed by a scientific treatise. 


806 The Negro In Our History 

"When Germany showed such disregard of her treaty obli 
gations as to invade Belgium, a neutral country, she lost 
the sympathy of most European and American countries, 
many of which finally joined the allies to curb the power of 
the Hohenzollerns. 

As the United States, although deeply sympathizing 
with the struggle against autocracy, did not deem the inter 
ference with our commerce and even the sinking of our 
Prosperity. neutral ships sufficient cause for intervention, 
this country entered at once upon an unprecedented period 
of commercial prosperity in becoming the source of supply 
for almost everything needed by the numerous nations in 
volved in the war. Industries, formerly in a struggling 
state, received an unusual impetus ; new enterprises sprang 
up in a day ; and persons formerly living merely above want 
multiplied their wealth by fortunate investments. The ag 
gressions of Germany upon our commerce resulting in the 
death of our citizens upon ships destroyed on the high seas 
became so numerous, however, that thousands of Americans, 
led by Theodore Roosevelt, insisted upon a declaration of 
war against Germany. But our trade with the Allies was so 
lucrative that it was difficult to convert a majority of the 
people of the country to the belief that it would be better 
for us to disturb the era of commercial prosperity to go 
to war for the mere principle that Germany wronged us in 
trying to break up our lawful commerce with the belliger 
ents in Europe. 

This continued prosperity brought on a new day for the 
laboring man and consequently a period of economic ad 
vancement for the Negro. The million of immigrants an- 
A new day nually reaching our shores were cut off from 
for labor. this country by the war. Labor in the United 

States then soon proved to be inadequate to supply the 
demand. Wages in the industrial centers of the North and 
West were increased to attract white men, but a sufficient 

The Negro In the World War 307 

number of them could not be found in this country, so 
great was the demand in the industrial centers, the plants, 
and cantonments, making preparations for war. Departing 
then from the time-honored custom in the North, the needy 
employers began to bid for Negro labor of the South. All 
Negroes who came seeking unskilled labor Negro labor 
were hired, and occasionally skilled workmen in demand, 
of color found employment. But the Negroes of the South 
were not merely invited; they were sent for. Those who 
first ventured North to find employment wrote back for 
their friends, and when this method failed to supply the 
demand, labor agents were sent for that purpose wherever 
they could find men ; but the Mississippi Valley, for several 
reasons, proved to be the most favorable section. Through 
this valley conditions had at times become unsettled on 
account of the periodical inundations of the Mississippi, and 
the Negroes in those lowlands, usually the greatest sufferers, 
welcomed the opportunity to go to a safer and more con 
genial part. Throughout the Gulf States, however, where 
the boll weevil had for years made depredations on the cot 
ton crop, Negroes were also inclined to move out to a section 
in which their economic progress might be assured. In 
short, the call from the North came at the time the Negroes 
were ready and willing to go. 

It may seem a little strange that Negroes who had for 
years complained of intolerable persecution in the South 
never made any strenuous efforts to leave until offered 
economic advantages in the North. Such a Economic 
course was inevitable, however, for, intoler- advantages 
able as conditions were in the South, the ort 

Negro had to live somewhere and he could not do so in 
the North because of the monopoly of labor maintained 
there by the hostile trades unions. In this more recent move 
ment, instead of making his way to the North where among 
unfriendly people he would have to eke out an existence as 

The Negro In Our History 


t 1 Less than 1 per cent, 
i to 5 per cent. 
6 to 10 per cent. 
10 to 15 per cent, 
15 to 25 per cent. 
25 to 35 per cent. 
35 to 50 per cent. 
60 per cent and over. 

By permission of the Tnited States Bureau of the Census 

The Negro In the World War 


310 The Negro In Our History 

a menial, he was invited to come to these industrial centers 
where friends and employment awaited him. History, 
moreover, does not show that large numbers of persons have 
migrated because of persecution. If not assured of an 
equally good economic foundation elsewhere, the majority 
of those persecuted have decided in the final analysis to bear 
the ills they have rather than fly to those they know not of. 

The oppression of the Negroes in the South, however, was 
also a cause of the exodus, though not the dominant one. 
When men from afar came to tell the Negroes of a way of 
Oppression, escape to a peaceful and law-abiding land, 
a cause. ^ e y were rece i ve d as spies returning from the 

inspection of a promised land. While the many were moved 
by the chance to amass fabulous sums, they all sighed with 
relief at the thought that they could at last go to a country 
where they could educate their children, protect their fami 
lies from insult, and enjoy the fruits of their labor. They 
had pleasant recollections of the days when Negroes wielded 
political power, and the dream of again coming into their 
own was a strong motive impelling many to leave the South. 
Negro leaders primarily interested in securing to the race 
the full enjoyment of its rights rejoiced that they were 
going North, while the conservative, sycophantic toady 
classes advised them to remain in the service of their em 
ployers in the South. 

In the North, however, although the Negroes readily 
entered upon the enjoyment of many privileges denied them 
in the South, they have here and there been brought into 
Troubles in competition with the radical white laboring 
the North. element which at Chester, Youngstown, and 
East St. Louis precipitated riots in trying to get rid of 
Negro labor. At East St. Louis in July, 1917, Negroes 
long harassed by this element finally became the object 
of onslaughts by the whites. They were overcome by the 

The Negro In the World War 311 

mob, which was supported by the silence of the militia sent 
to maintain order and even outwardly by certain of its 
members, who permitted individuals to take their guns to 
drive the Negroes into their congested quarters, where they 
massacred and burned 125. The administration of justice 
in this northern State seemed no better than that in the 
South; for although the whites were the aggressors in the 

A RESULT OF THE MIGRATION. A Negro teacher with pupils 
of both races. 

riot, the court inflicted more punishment on the Negroes 
than on the whites. One Negro was sentenced to life im 
prisonment but later acquitted. Ten other Negroes were 
to serve fourteen years, whereas four white men were im 
prisoned for from fourteen to fifteen years, five for five 
years, eleven for less than one year; eighteen were fined, 
and seventeen acquitted. 
These outbreaks, of course, justified the predictions of 

312 The Negro In Our History 

southern employers that the Negroes would not be welcomed 
in the North and strengthened certain seriously thinking 
Negroes in believing that the prosperity of the Negro in 
Differing the industrial centers was merely temporary 

reflections. and that the trades unions, especially when 
strengthened by the immigrants from Europe after the war, 
would eventually force the Negroes out of employment after 
having severed the ties which bound them to the South. 
Other Negroes had little fear from the immigrants. Be 
lieving that the depopulation of Europe during this war 
will render a large immigration from that quarter an im 
possibility, others urged the Negroes to continue their com 
ing North in spite of all conflicts and difficulties, seeing 
that they are now migrating in such numbers as to be 
materially helpful and to wield economic and political 

Knowing that the South was losing the only sort of labor 
it can use in its exploiting system, employers of that section 
considered the exodus a calamity. They, therefore, took 
The Exodus steps to impede and if possible to stop the 
a calamity. movement. Moral suasion was first used. Ne 
groes were told of the horrors of the North and especially 
of the hard winters. When letters to Negroes from friends 
who were easily braving these hardships reached the South, 
another sort of argument was necessary. Labor agents were 
first handicapped by requiring of them a high license ; they 
were then by special ordinances prohibited from inducing 
Negroes to leave, and finally driven out of the South. As 
the mail proved to be almost as good an avenue for reaching 
the prospective migrant, those seeking to prevent the exodus 
found their efforts still futile. Negroes going North were 
then driven from the railway stations, taken from trains, 
and imprisoned on false charges to delay or prevent their 
departure from southern cities, but the Negroes continued to 
go North. The movement was not checked until after the 

The Negro In the World War 313 

intervention of the United States in the war, when the ad 
ministration spent so much money in the South while 
hurrying the preparation for war that wages so rapidly in 
creased and work became so general that it was unneces 
sary for the Negroes to go North to improve their economic 

The final intervention of the United States in the World 
War marked another epoch in the history of the Negro in 
this country. In the first place few people in America 
were anxious to go to the front, although a The interven- 
majority of our citizens felt that the Hohen- tion of the 
zollern autocracy should be destroyed. Men 
had to be converted to the war. German spies had long 
been abroad in this country, and millions, because of their 
German descent, felt bitter toward the United States for 
going to the aid of the Allies. There was then much appre 
hension as to the attitude of the Negroes, as they through 
out this country had been treated as pariahs unprepared 
for the full measure of that democracy for which Woodrow 
Wilson desired to fight in Europe that the world might be a 
decent place to live in. As a matter of fact German spies 
did approach Negroes, and a few of them ex- German spies, 
pressed themselves as being in sympathy with Germany. 
A still larger number boldly advocated making this coun 
try a decent place for the Negroes before taking Negroes 
to Europe to secure to the oppressed there privileges which 
the blacks could not enjoy at home. 

In thinking that the Negro would prove disloyal to the 
United States, however, the white man showed that he did 
not understand the race. The Negroes of this country 
love their native soil and will readily die, if The Negroes 
necessary, to defend it. However, they do lo y al - 
not love the reactionaries, who during the last fifty years 
of their control of the Federal Government have failed to 
live up to their oath to carry out the Constitution of the 

314 The Negro In Our History 

United States, which guarantees to the Negroes the enjoy 
ment of every right, immunity, and privilege, found in 
the most liberal democracy on earth. The Negroes will con 
tinue to be loyal to their country, with the hope that 
the degraded elements in control may become sufficiently 
civilized to abandon medieval methods for government 
based on liberty, equality, and fraternity. As the prin 
ciple is worth fighting for, and as the struggle for it must 
not be hopeless in view of the interest occasionally shown in 
the man far down, the Negroes would not permit their 
dispositions to sour; they forgot their wrongs and offered 
themselves to fight the battles of humanity. 

The reactionary class, however, although ready to brand 
the Negroes with suspicion and to prosecute them for dis- 
Eeactionarles lo y alt y> urged the government not to recruit 
against Negroes. The Negroes, according to the 

whites of this attitude, constituted an inferior 
class which should not participate in the struggle of white 
men. Many Southerners, moreover, who, in their faulty 
judgment, have solved forever the race problem by depriv 
ing Negroes of social, political and civic rights, considered 
it alarming to train them in the arts of war ; for men who 
have waded through blood to victory are not easily intimi 
dated into subjection to the insult and outrage legalized 
in the backward districts. The efforts of the reactionaries 
were futile, however, and the Negroes were drawn into the 
army in much larger numbers than they should have been. 
Although constituting one-tenth of the population, the 
Negro element furnished thirteen per cent of the soldiers 
called to the colors. At the same time the European na 
tions had not sufficient prejudice to hesitate as did 
Americans in deciding the question of employing Negro 
troops. There were 280,000 Senegales who had helped to 
repel the Germans on the Ourcq and the Marne, 30,000 
Congolese, and about 20,000 from the British West Indies, 

The Negro In the World War 315 

who also did their part in saving France from autocracy. 

When the American Negro was finally decided upon as 
desirable for the army, the same reactionaries in control of 
the Federal Government endeavored to restrict them in the 
service. Negroes had to register under Restriction 
methods of discrimination, that they might in the service 
not be confused with the whites. No pro 
vision in the beginning was made for training Negro 
officers, and southern congressmen urged that all Negroes 
be confined to stevedore regiments to labor under white 
commissioned and non-commissioned officers. Fearing that 
this would be done, Negro leaders protested, charging the 
War Department with conscripting Negroes for labor. 
The Secretary of War, of course, assured them that nothing 
of the sort was planned when it was actually being done. 

To the Service of Supply regiments most Negro draftees 
were sent. Not less than three-fourths of the 200,000 of 
the Negroes sent to France were reduced to laborers. It re 
sulted that one-tenth of the population of the nation was 
compelled by a country fighting for democracy abroad, to 
supply three-fourths of the labor of the ex- i n the Service 
peditionary force. They were commanded, of Su PP!y- 
moreover, largely by illiterate, prejudiced white men, and 
finally all but enslaved in the Service of Supply divisions 
abroad by unsympathetic whites, the majority of whom 
were southerners on the order of slave drivers. These 
draftees were subjected to unnecessary rigor ; they were as 
signed unusually hard tasks; they were given inadequate 
recreation, while white soldiers in the same camp were ex 
empted from these hardships. Abusive language, kicks 
and cuffs and injurious blows were the order of the day in 
dealing with the Negroes impressed into this branch of 
service. As there were in these camps no Negroes in touch 
with the outside world except the Young Men s Christian 
Association secretaries, and the slave-driving officers sue- 

316 The Negro In Our History 

ceeded in displacing some of these, there was no one to 
whom these Negroes could take a complaint. The Bureau 
of Negro Economics directed by George E. Haynes in 
the Department of Labor was very busy with various plans 
during the war, but did not seem to improve the life of the 
Negro laborer in the army or in civil life ; and the services 
of Emmett J. Scott as Special Assistant to the Secretary of 
War had little bearing on the situation. 

These Negroes, however, accepted their lot as good sol 
diers. Loyal to the cause of humanity, they without mur 
mur faced humiliation, hardships, and insult. But the uni- 
Loyal in versal opinion is that the Negro stevedore, in 

spite of dis- spite of all he had to endure, was the best la- 

borer in the war and that without this efficient 

service the Allies could not have been supplied with food and 
munitions rapidly enough to save them from exhaustion. 
These men were stationed at the English and French ports 
and at depots like that at Givres, where millions of Amer 
ican wealth handled by 25,000 men passed through enor 
mous masses of warehouses with 140 miles of interior rail 
road lines for the handling of freight. They unloaded the 
transports, prepared the vehicles to convey the supplies 
to the interior, and built depots for storing them. When 
the way to the expeditionary force lay through woods and 
over hills, the labor battalions built roads from the port of 
entry to the front. They, moreover, buried the dead, sal 
vaged war material, and detonated explosives scattered over 
France by the enemy. 

The Negroes were diplomatically told that they would be 
drafted to fight in the ranks as other men. The War De 
partment, however, was not at first sure that the army 
could make use of the Negro as an officer. Seeing what 
little hope this situation offered the thousands of well-edu 
cated Negroes who in the army would be serving under in 
ferior whites, the students and a few members of the faculty 

The Negro In the World War 317 

of Howard University instituted a nation-wide campaign 
for a training camp in which Negroes of certain educa 
tional qualifications should have the opportunity to qualify 
as officers in the national service. As this The demand 
movement soon had the support of all Negro for Negro 
schools of consequence and was promoted, too, 
by many white and black citizens, the War Department 
was forced to take the matter under advisement. After 
some hesitation the ad 
ministration decided to es 
tablish at Fort Des Moines 
a camp for the training 
of colored officers. There 
was, however, much ap 
prehension as to how the 
experiment would work 
out and still more as to 
whether the United States 
Government would actu 
ally commission a large 
number 1 of Negro officers. 
Six hundred and seventy- 
five of the twelve hundred COL. CHARLES YOUSG, the highest 

ranking Negro graduate of West 


accepted at the camp, how 
ever, were commissioned 
in October, 1917, and the country saw going hither and 
thither the largest number of Negroes who had ever worn 
the stripes and bars. 

The Negro officer, however, had already been proscribed. 
The administration had granted the Negro this recogni 
tion to secure the support of the Negroes for the war, but 
the Negro officer was not desired in the army, proscription 
and the personnel in control did not intend 
to keep him there. Colonel Young was soon 
retired because of high blood pressure from which he did 

318 The Negro In Our History 

not dreadfully suffer until in a tinxe of rapid promo 
tion in the army it seemed likely that he would advance 
high enough to command too many white men and disturb 
race superiority in the United States. Then followed in the 
cantonments the campaign to discredit and force the Negro 
officer out of the army. Through the Secretary of War, 
Emmett J. Scott was able to counteract some of these efforts 
made within the limits of the United States. 

This attack, however, finally centered on the Negro 
officer in action in France, as it was a little difficult to do 
here some things which could be effected abroad before the 
Fighting the War Department could intervene. In the 
Negro officer 92nd Division, in which most of the Negroes 
n ranee. trained at Fort Des Moines served, the Negro 
officer suffered unusually. The division was placed in 
command of an incompetent man, General Ballou, who, sur 
rounded by officials prejudiced against the Negro, became 
unduly influenced thereby and shaped his policy accord 
ingly. He showed very little judgment in trying to force 
his division to accept race discrimination, and still less in 
criticizing Negro officers in the presence of their subordi 
nates, saying that they were failures before they had been 
tested. Wherever Negro officers were stationed, moreover, 
a systematic effort was made to get rid of them by bring 
ing them as early as possible before efficiency boards to find 
excuses for their retirement or assignment to labor bat 
talions. In regiments where there were all Negroes, as in 
the New York Fifteenth, from which Colonel Hayward, the 
white commander, secured the transfer of all Negro officers 
after retiring a few for inefficiency, the same end was 
reached. The staff could then contend that as additional of 
ficers thereafter were necessary and other Negro officers 
could not be supplied, the regiment would have to take 
on white officers altogether, since officers of the two races 

The Negro In the World War 

320 The Negro In Our History 

could not serve together. Many superior officers openly 
asked that white officers be sent to their regiments regard 
less of the question of efficiency. 

To carry out this purpose grave complaints were filed 
against the Negro officers. They were often charged with 
cowardice, although the Negro soldier was by the same man 
Methods used, praised for his bravery. Such a charge was 
preferred against four officers of the 368th Regiment who, 
having received the wrong orders and finding themselves 
entangled in barb wire while under the fire of the enemy s 
guns, retreated. As a matter of fact, these troops had not 
been prepared for this attack. They were without maps, 
without hand grenades, and without adequate ammunition. 
Major Elser, a white officer supposed to be leading them, 
was nowhere to be found during the engagement. Two of 
the Negro Captains, according to Ralph W. Tyler, a war 
correspondent, after they had gone over the top and had 
run into a nest of machine guns, turned back and asked for 
support and got the third battalion. But they could not 
get into touch with their Major, who, immediately after the 
engagement became serious, had retired to the rear some 
where, making it impossible for the captain to connect with 
him to secure orders. This Major, however, because of 
the failure of the engagement under such circumstances, 
charged the Negro officers with cowardice and inefficiency. 
As a reward for his cowardice, however, he was a few days 
thereafter raised to the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel and 
given command of a Negro regiment. An investigation by 
the Secretary of War showed that these officers were not to 
be blamed and he exonerated them, taking occasion to laud 
these and other Negro soldiers for their valor and patri 

In keeping with the policy of eliminating Negro officers, 
from the army, Colonel Allan J. Greer addressed a letter 
for this purpose to Senator K. D. McKellar, in violation of 

The Negro In the World War 321 

a law which, in a country believing in justice, would sub 
ject him to court martial. Pointing out the so-called weak 
ness in the Negro officer he said: "Now that a reorgani 
zation of the army is in prospect, and as all A step be- 
officers of the temporary forces have been y nd Bounds. 
asked if they desire to remain in the regular army, I 
think I ought to bring a matter to your attention that 
is of vital importance, not only from a military point of 
view but from that which all Southerners have. I refer 
to the question of Negro officers and Negro troops. 

"The record of the division," said he, "is one which 
will probably never be given full publicity, but the bare 
facts are about as follows: We came to France in June, 
we were given seven weeks in the training area instead of 
the four weeks in training area as usually allotted, then 
went to a quiet sector of the front. From there we went 
to Argonne, and in the offensive starting there on Septem 
ber 26, had one regiment in the line, attached to the 38th 
French Corps. They failed there in all their missions, 
laid down and sneaked to the rear, until they were with 
drawn. Thirty of the officers of this regiment alone were 
reported either for cowardice or failure to prevent their 
men from retreating, and this against very little opposi 
tion. The French and our white field officers did all that 
could possibly have been done ; but the troops were impos 
sible. One of our Majors commanding a battalion said, 
* The men are rank cowards ; there is no other word for it. " 

While these white officers of superior rank were per 
sistently trying to weed out the Negro officers on the 
grounds of their inefficiency, the French, who were fortu 
nately brigaded with some of the troops com- Praised by 
manded by them, had nothing but words of the French, 
praise for their gallant leadership. Among the French 
officers of consequence who thus complimented them were 
Colonel Tupes and General Goybet. In fact, the French 

322 The Negro In Our History 

officers, easily observing that the trouble with the Negro 
officer and his American superior was merely a question of 
color, often interfered to save many a Negro officer from 
humiliation and from dishonorable discharge from the 
army. That there was no truth in the reports as to the 
general inefficiency of the Negro officer is evidenced by the 
fact that the 370th (the 8th Illinois), which was officered 
throughout by Negroes, rendered such gallant service that 
it received more citations and croix de guerre than any 
other American regiment in France. And many wondered 
how it could be possible for a Negro to be such a good 
soldier and have no possibility for leadership. 

It is true that some Negro officers were inefficient; and 
so were many whites, thousands of whom could not stand 
the ordeal. It is true also that it does not make for the 
The criticism morale of the army to criticize, abuse and 
unjust. humiliate an officer in the presence of his men. 

If the white officers could not by army regulations be forced 
to respect the Negro officers, how could the Negro soldiers 
be expected to do so? Yet it is not true that the Negro 
soldiers in France did not respect and follow their Negro 
officers. Unusually proud of the honor conferred upon 
men of their race, they rather treated them with every 
mark of respect. The Negro officers were not lowered in 
the estimation of the Negro soldiers by the whiff and scorn 
of the white officers higher in the ranks, for the same dart 
of prejudice hurled at the Negro officer was also directed 
against Negro soldiers. They were all in common to be 
socially proscribed in France by Americans while fighting 
to make the world safe for democracy. 

A few cases in evidence will be interesting. Certain 
colored troops were ordered to sail on the battleship 
Virginia, but after going aboard, the officer in charge had 
Insult. these troops removed on the ground that no 

colored troops had ever traveled on board a United States 

The Negro In the World War 323 

battleship. Where under ordinary circumstances it would 
have been sometimes necessary for officers of both races to 
eat together, special arrangements were made so as to have 
the whites report to certain quarters while the blacks went 
to another, the blacks having in most of these cases inferior 
accommodations. Planning for a reception of General 
Pershing at one of the forwarding camps, General Logan 
ordered that all troops except Negroes should be under 
arms. Negro troops not at work were to be in their quar 
ters or in their tents. 

Every effort was made to separate the Negro soldiers 
from the French people. General Ervin, desiring to re 
duce the Negro soldier to the status of undesirables, issued 
among other regulations in his order Num- Prejudice in 
her 40 a proclamation that Negroes should not the arm y- 
associate with French women. The order, of course, was 
not obeyed, but an effort was made to enforce it even in 
the case of Negro officers. Some Negro officers who were in 
school at Vannes accepted the invitation to attend certain 
entertainments given for charity as Franco-American 
dances requiring an admission fee. Upon hearing of this, 
General Horn prohibited their attendance by ordering that 
no officer of the 167th Brigade should be permitted to at 
tend a dance where a fee was charged,- although the white 
officers at this same school, but belonging to other brigades, 
could attend. 

To extend systematically the operation of race prejudice 
throughout France the Americans had issued, August 7, 
1918, through a French mission from General Pershing s 
headquarters certain Secret Information con- A bold 
cerning Black American Troops. The Amer- slander, 
icans proclaimed that it was important for French officers 
in command of black Americans to have an idea as to the 
status of the race in the United States. The Negroes were 
branded as a menace of degeneracy which could be escaped 


The Negro In Our History 

only by an impassable gulf established between the two 
races, and especially so because of the tendency of the 
blacks to commit the loathsome crime of assault, as they 
said the Negroes had already been doing in France. The 
French were, therefore, cautioned not to treat the Negroes 

with familiarity and in 
dulgence, which are mat 
ters of grievous concern 
to Americans and an af 
front to their national 
policy. The Americans, 
it continued, were afraid 
that the blacks might 
thereby be inspired with 
undesirable aspirations. 
It w a s carefully ex 
plained that although 
the black man is a citi 
zen of the United States 
he is regarded by the 
whites as an inferior 
with whom relations of 
MAJOR JOEL E. SPINGABN, an enemy hn4inPQQ and Q P r v i p p 
of prejudice in the army 

only are possible; that 

the black is noted for his want of intelligence, lack of dis 
cretion, and lack of civic and professional conscience. The 
French Army then was advised to prevent intimacy be 
tween French officers and black officers, not to eat with 
them nor shake hands nor seek to talk or meet with them 
outside of the requirements of military service. They were 
asked also not to commend too highly the black American 
troops in the presence of white Americans. Although it 
was all right to recognize the good qualities and service 
of black Americans, it should be done in moderate terms 
strictly in keeping with the truth. The French were urged 

The Negro In the World War 325 

also to restrain the native cantonment population from 
spoiling the Negroes, as white Americans become greatly 
incensed at any deep expression of intimacy between white 
women and black men. 

From accessible evidence it is clear that if some of the 
American soldiers had struggled as hard to defeat the Ger 
mans as they did to implant race prejudice in France, the 
army would have been much nearer the Rhine when the arm 
istice was signed. They failed, however, to bring the French 
around to their way of seeing liberty, and the Negroes, in 
appreciation for the democracy of France as they saw it and 
felt it, willingly sacrificed their lives to save the beautifully 
humane people. Whether in Champagne, in the Argonne 
Forest or at Metz, it was the history of the Negro repeating 
itself unflinching stand before the brutal enemy, eager 
ness to engage in the conflict, and noble daring endurance 
in the heat of the battle. Many a white The Negro as 
soldier, many a while officer, returned with a fighter, 
the testimony that they were braver than any white man 
that ever lived. They fought the enemy from behind and 
in the front and still came out the victor. But they were 
not merely victors. A score of them, like Roberts and 
Johnson of the New York Fifteenth, returned as heroes 
decorated by France for their bravery in action and their 
glorious triumph over Germans by whom they were greatly 

Thinking that the record of the Negro in France might 
be taken as a reason for enlarging his measure of democ 
racy for which he fought, the Negro-hating element in the 
army, navy, and civilian life organized to The welcome 
prevent this even before the close of the war. home - 
They tried so to intimidate the Negroes on their return 
home that they might remain content to continue in a 
position of recognized inferiority. The temper of edi 
torials appearing in reactionary newspapers indicated 


The Negro In Our History 

a hostile reception for Negro soldiers returning from the 
war, and soon southerners openly declared that such 
demands would be firmly met with opposition typical of 
the Ku Klux Klan. The returning Negro soldier was, 
therefore, for the South, an object of contempt. The 
very uniform on a Negro was to the southerner like a 
red rag thrown in the face of a bull. Negro soldiers re- 

the Croix de Guerre in France 

turning to the South then were beaten, shot down, and 
lynched, to terrorize the blacks insisting on better treat 
ment for their race. They were not guilty of the viola 
tion of any law, but the South considers it advisable to 
lynch a few Negroes even when it is known that they are 
innocent ; for it generally results in terrorizing others who 
might otherwise insist that they be treated as men. 

This post-war down-with-the-Negro propaganda spread 
from the South into some points in the North, and finally 

The Negro In the World War 327 

reached Washington, the capital of the nation, itself. Dur 
ing the second decade of the century Washington was south- 
ernized by an influx of public functionaries and civil service 
employes hypocritically parading as promot- Race war in 
ers of democracy but inalterably attached to Washington, 
the caste of color. On the nineteenth of July, 1919, then, 
there appeared in the streets of Washington, a number of 
soldiers, sailors and marines, who because of exaggerated re 
ports that Negroes had assaulted white women and the rumor 
that the wife of a marine had been thus attacked, proceeded 
to the southwest section of Washington where they beat sev 
eral innocent Negroes. On Sunday, the following day, these 
whites on leave from the United States Army and Navy, 
supported by civilians, had effected a better organization 
to carry out their purposes. They formed at Pennsylvania 
Avenue and Seventh Street a mob which took over the city 
from the Capitol to the White House. Negroes were pulled 
from vehicles and street cars and beaten into unconscious 
ness. One was thus taken possession of by the mob and 
beaten unmercifully right in front of the White House, 
where the President must have heard his groans but has 
not as yet uttered a word of protest. Other Negroes were 
shot and left to die on the streets. 

Going along Pennsylvania Avenue, that night, the author 
himself walked into the midst of the mob at the intersec 
tion of Eighth Street and Pennsylvania Avenue. Before 
he realized where he was, there resounded shots all around 
him. A large mob swept down Pennsylvania A lynching in 
Avenue pursuing a Negro yelling for mercy, Washington, 
while another mob at the debouchment of Eighth Street 
had caught a Negro whom they conveniently adjusted for 
execution and shot while the author, walking briskly as 
possible to escape the same fate himself, heard the harassing 
groans of the Negro. To be sure that their murderous 

328 The Negro In Our History 

task was well done a leader yelled to the executioners, "Did 
you get him?" The reply was, "Yes, we got him." 

The events of the following day, however, showed that this 
mob had misjudged the Washington Negroes. They made 
extensive preparation for the retaliatory onslaught of the 
whites. Weapons were bought, houses were barricaded, and 
high powered automobiles were armored for touring the 
city late in the night. The augmented police force and the 
300 provost guards supplied with rifles and machine guns 
did not deter the Negroes. When attacked by the white 
mob they easily stood their ground, and took the offensive 
when the white mob attempted to invade Negro quarters, 
although Thomas Armistead, charging in defense of the 
Negroes, fell mortally wounded. Whereas the whites 
wounded about 300 Negroes the Sunday night when they 
were not expecting the attack, the casualty list of Monday 
night showed two Negroes and four whites killed and a 
much larger number of whites wounded than Negroes. 

A riot almost of the same order broke out in Chicago a few 
weeks later. In that city the large migration of Negroes to 
its industrial plants and the invasion of desirable residen 
tial districts by these newcomers incensed the whites to 
the point of precipitating a race war. The Negroes, how 
ever, showed by the number of whites killed the same 
tendency of the Washington Negro to retaliate when at 
tacked by cowards. The Negro helped to save democracy 
abroad, but he must fight to enjoy it at home. 



DURING the last quarter of a century the Negro has had 
some ground for hope in the forces which bid fair to bring 
about a social readjustment involving the leveling of so 
ciety if not the elevation of the underman Impending 
to rule over his hitherto so-called superiors. 1 crisis - 
All elements of our population during this period have 
been subject to change by these evolutionary movements at 
work among the masses. The laboring man is no longer 
a servile employee of serf -like tendencies, but a radical mem 
ber of a dissatisfied group, demanding a proper division of 
the returns from his labor. He is made more potential in 
this position by a recent propaganda to the effect that, so far 
as the laboring man is concerned, political affiliation means 
little, since all parties have been under the influence of 
aristocratic leaders, who, taking advantage of the ignorance 
of their constituents, have been able to rule this country 
for the benefit of those that have rather than in the inter 
est of those that have not. In conformity then with the 
cycles of government borne out by history, this country 
has passed through the stage of aristocracy to that of the 
white man s democracy and bids fair to be revolutionized 

i This study may be further extended by reading W. E. B. DuBoia s 
The Soul of Black Folk, his The Negro," William Picken s The New 
Negro, Kelly Miller s Race Adjustment, Out of the House of Bond 
age, and Appeal to Reason. The Atlanta University Studies and 
the Occasional Papers of the American Negro Academy are helpful. 
The files of The Crisis, The Messenger, The Crusader, The Boston 
Guardian, The Chicago Defender and The New York Age should be 


330 The Negro In Our History 

in the near future by the rule of the mob represented by 
so-called organized labor. In other words, the country has 
developed from aristocracy to frontier democracy, from 
frontier democracy to progressivism and from progres- 
sivism almost to socialism.. 

This has been all but true even in the South where this 
social upheaval has expressed itself politically in the rise 
of the poor white man. During the days of slavery the 
The rise of South and, to some extent, the whole country, 
the poor continued under the domination of aristocratic 

slaveholders. The poor whites, driven to the 
uplands and the mountains where slavery was unprofitable, 
never accumulated sufficient wealth to attain political recog 
nition enjoyed by those living near the coast, despite the fact 
that there were numerous clashes, urgent debates, charges, 
and counter-charges coming from discordant elements among 
the mountain whites requiring an equalization of politi 
cal power. When, however, after 1850 and especially after 
the Civil War there resulted an extension of the franchise, 
making it universal free manhood suffrage, the poor whites 
did not long delay in realizing the power given them 
through the ballot. Under the leadership then of men 
Radical like James K. Vardaman, Benjamin Tillman, 

leaders. an( j Q j e Blease, these uplanders have come 

into their own. Lacking that sympathy for the Negroes 
found among the ex-slaveholders, these poor whites have 
in getting control of the southern governments, however, ef 
fected sufficient changes to deprive the blacks of their civil 
and political rights and even of some economic opportuni 
ties. Giving so much attention to the perpetuation of 
caste, then, the molders of public opinion in the South 
have not permitted the radically democratic movements 
to invade that section. There it was discovered that 
it would be impossible to live up to the principles set forth 
without giving the Negroes a larger share of social and 

The Negro and Social Justice 


political privileges. In the North, where a smaller number 
of Negroes have been found, there has not been any serious 
handicap to such movements. So far as the The situation 
Single Taxers, the Socialists, and the Bolshe- ta tlie Nortn. 
viki are concerned, the Negro may share at their table the 
same blessings vouchsafed to others. The rank and file of 

the people, however, have 
hesitated to recognize the 
Negro. Leaders in the 
_North are still trying to 
decide how large a share 
of social justice, how much 
of.-t.hft workl-wide democ 
racy, the Negro should en- 

The Negro, however, has 
been loath to 
drift into an 
archy. His claim for social 
justice is rightly based on 
his work as a conservative 
and constructive force in 
the countrx_Although the 
present day encroachment! 
on the part of the degraded 

of tlie 


of the National Association for the 

Advancement of Colored People 

rnany Negroes to take up 

arms s _m selMefense^js^in Houston, Washington, and 
Chicago, in Elaine, Arkansas, Knoxville, Tennessee, and 
Tulsa, Oklahoma, the blacks have not and do not desire to 
become radical. Increasing persecution, however, is gradu 
ally forcing Negroes on the defensive into the ranks of the 
Socialists and Radicals. Negro preachers, editors, and 
teachers, who have for years pleaded at the bar of public 
opinion for the recognition of the Negro as a man, now find 

332 The Negro In Our History 

themselves unconsciously allied with the most radical forces 
in the United States. This, of course, if not arrested by a 
more sympathetic consideration of the Negro s rights, may 
increase the ranks of the malcontents to the extent of ef 
fecting a general upheaval in this country. 

It is well to note that there no longer exists a frontier 
with all of its opportunities for free arable land, where 
in the midst of so many changes, frontiersmen passed so 
rapidly through the various stages of the civilization of the 
backwoods, the farm, the town and the city that in a 
generation they became thoroughly Americanized. Since 
1890 we have been confronted with the aftermath of the 
frontier the increase of restlessness, pessimism and revo 
lutionary sentiment, aggravated by the presence of un- 
Americanized foreigners who, no longer able to go West, 
must remain in our large cities to wage war against the 
capitalists whom they now consider the source of all their 

Labor and capital now face ea,ch other in the cities in 
a restricted area, and each has to combine to protect its 
The conflict interests. The combination of capital was 
in cities. impossible when land was abundant and in 

dividualism was strong. To protect the weak we are now 
reduced to a new sort of radicalism which differs from that 
of the European Socialists in that while the latter are try 
ing to build a democracy out of the remains of monarchial 
life, our malcontents are resorting to various political ex 
periments to hold on to the ideals of the frontier which 
have been shattered by the concentration of the population 
in cities. There has followed, therefore, such assimilation 
of the black and white people to urban conditions as to 
mark an epoch in the making of our civilization, effecting 
a revolution not only in industry but in politics, society, 
and life itself. The rural society has been destroyed by 
commercialism, which has transformed the majority of the 

The Negro and Social Justice 333 

American people into commercial beings. As more than 
half of the people of the United States now live in urban 
communities of over 5000 inhabitants, the problems of this 
country tomorrow will be the problems of the city. As the 
cities are now in control of the most radical elements in 

the United States, it is 

only a matter of time be 
fore the national policy 
will be dominated by radi 
cal thought, and men dis 
posed to hold on to the 
best in republican govern 
ment should think seri 
ously of the danger of 
driving by persecution in 
to the ranks of this unre 
strained element the Ne 
groes, who constitute the 
most conservative and the 
most constructive stock in 

With the migration of 
a large number of Negroes 
to northern cities, how 
ever, there have been tend 
encies indicating that 
wherever Negroes are nu 
merous enough to impress themselves upon the community, 
disturbing race prejudice develops. We hear, therefore, 
of the agitation for separate schools in Race conflict. 
Philadelphia, Pittsburg, Columbus, Indianapolis, and Chi 
cago. There is also a desire among certain whites, not 
necessarily to segregate the Negroes by special ordi 
nances to that effect, but by a common understanding to 
restrict them to certain parts of the cities where they 

of the Board of Directors of the 
National Association for the Ad 
vancement of Colored People 

334 The Negro In Our History 

may not come into such close contact with the so-called 
superior whites. Eace prejudice in these parts then has 
become much more volcanic at times than it is in cer 
tain sections of the South, as was evidenced by the recent 
riots at Chester, Pennsylvania, Youngstown, Ohio, East 
St. Louis, and Chicago. Although it does not appear 
that any part of the North has, as in the case of the re 
gions like that around Tyler, Texas, developedjnto what 
may be properly styled ^mffinal Community, it has shown 
possibilities in that direction. 

The greatest difficulty of all which the Negroes have had 
in the North has been the problem of earning a living. 
When the North had few Negroes on its hands it was an 
The economic unusually pleasant experience for a Negro 
problem. to g to t j iat sec ti on and spend his money 

without restriction, enjoying all of the social privileges 
usually denied the Negroes in the South. But until re 
cently it had always been extremely difficult for the same 
persons of color permitted to worship in a white church 
or to attend a white school to earn a living among these 
same sympathetic persons. It is only since 1916, when the 
Negroes went North in such large numbers as to enable 
employers to hire enough of them to take over the entire 
operation of plants, that they have easily succeeded in 
finding employment. 

This difficulty has seemed a problem impossible of solu 
tion for the reason that back of the protests against the em 
ployment of Negroes in higher pursuits have been the trades 
Trades unions. unions, wielding such power that in the eco 
nomic world their will has been law. Several years ago 
the American Federation of Labor declared that its pur 
pose was for the organization of all working people with 
out regard to class, race, religion, or politics; that many 
organizations affiliated with the American Federation of 
Labor had within their membership Negro workmen with 

The Negro arid Social Justice 335 

all other workers of trades ; and that the American Federa 
tion of Labor had made and was making every effort with 
in its power for the organization of these workmen. This, 
however, was largely diplomacy; but a change of attitude 
was evident as early as 1910 when the national council of 
the American Federation of Labor unanimously passed a 
resolution inviting persons 
of all races to join, giving 
also instructions for mak 
ing a special effort to or 
ganize Negroes, in 1913. 
It required the dearth of 
labor during the World 
War, however, to give the 
Negroes such a basis for 
economic freedom in the 
North as to secure actual 
consideration from the 
trades unions. Seeing that 
Negroes had to be em 
ployed and that they 
would be worth so much 
more to the trades unions 
than the latter would be to 
the Negroes, the American 
Federation of La,bor feebly expressed a desire for the or 
ganization of Negro laborers as units of the various trades 

In carrying out this program, however, the American 
Federation of Labor was taking high ground. In fact, it 
found itself far in advance of the sentiment favorable to 
the Negro in the rank and file of the local trades unions 
themselves. There was a tendency nominally The position 
to admit the Negroes to the union when it of the unions, 
was found that their competition was such as to necessitate 

DR. F. J. GRIMKE, a preacher of the 
New Democracy 

336 The Negro In Our History 

their admission, and thereafter, by certain excuses and pe 
culiar methods of evasion, to employ white men in prefer 
ence to the Negroes, although the latter might be mem 
bers of the union. During the migration, however, the 
American Federation of Labor had to take another stand. 
At the annual meeting of the American Federation in 1916, 
therefore, it was reported that the Negroes who were then 
being brought North were to fill the places of union men 
demanding better conditions and it was, therefore, felt 
necessary to take steps to organize these Negroes who were 
coming in rather large numbers to be checked by strikes 
and riots. 

The following year, the American Federation of Labor, 
after giving more attention than ever to the situation of 
Attention labor conditions among the blacks, found it- 
given self somewhat handicapped because of the 
Negroes. fact that not Qnlv wag there an ant i pa thy of 

the Negro toward the labor unions, but they were not in 
formed as to their operations and their benefits. It was, 
therefore, urged that a Negro organizer be appointed to 
extend the work of these trades unions among them. 
Many of the delegates assembled thought it advisable to 
suggest that at the peace table closing up the World War 
the American people should endeavor to influence the 
nations participating in this conference to agree upon a 
plan of turning over the continent of Africa or certain 
parts thereof to the African race and those descendants of 
the same residing in this country. 

At the meeting of the American Federation of Labor in 
Atlantic City in 1919, there was reached the decision to ad 
mit Negroes indiscriminately into the various trades unions, 
The American en Jyi n the same privileges as the whites. 
Federation of Proclaiming thus so boldly the abolition of 
Labor in 1919. race (junction in the labor organizations, the 
American Federation of Labor has at least laid the foun- 

The Negro and Social Justice 337 

dation for the economic advancement of the blacks. This 
declaration, however, must be accepted merely as a basis 
upon which the Negro may take his stand for the economic 
struggle before him. Broad as the decision may seem, 
it must, like any other law or constitution, be carried out by 
persons who, if not sympathetically disposed, may give this 
decision such an interpretation as to make it mean nothing. 
Liberal as the American Federation of Labor may now be, 
moreover, the Negroes to come into their own, enjoying eco 
nomic liberty, must still bring about such changes in the 
laws and constitutions of the labor locals as to permit the 
carrying out of the purpose of the national body. As the 
matter now stands, then, the victory has been won in the na 
tional council, but the battle is yet to be waged in the 

A number of Negroes, not content with the efforts for their 
economic advancement made from without, have endeavored 
to remedy their own evils through agencies either estab 
lished by Negroes or by white persons closely cooperating 
with them. One of the factors in effecting Efforts 
the proper distribution of labor during the among 
World War and in securing for them justice Negroes, 
in many communities where they would have otherwise 
been imposed upon, was the National League on Urban 
Conditions among Negroes. This is an organization with 
eighteen branches dealing with the Negro laboring, depend 
ent, and delinquent classes in the various large cities. 
The Negroes have organized also in New York a Negro la 
bor union largely intended to find employment for Negroes 
rather than to secure an increase in their wages. In the 
Southwest, there has been organized the Inter-State Asso 
ciation of Negro Trainmen of America, intended to perfect 
the union of all unorganized railway employees of color. 
During the World War there have been several such or 
ganizations following in the wake of this, and recently an 


The Negro In Our History 

effort has been made to effect the organization of a national 
body which will be for the Negroes just what the American 
Federation of Labor has been for the whites. 

The Negroes have sought justice, too, not by trying to 
force themselves socially on the whites, but by certain im- 
A just provements in the situations in which they 

now are. One of their attacks is directed 
against the poor railroad accommodations in the separate 
cars and stations assigned Negroes in the South. They 

complain also of the in 
adequate school facilities, 
contending that it is poor 
logic to insist that the Ne 
groes must be denied cer 
tain privileges because of 
their undeveloped state 
and at the same time be 
refused those opportuni 
ties for improvement nec 
essary to make themselves 
worthy of those privileges 
which they are denied. 
They have insisted that 
certain recreational facili 
ties be given the Negroes 
in the interest of their 
contentment and health, 
which are essential to the 
maintenance of that physical strength necessary to effi 
cient labor. They have wisely contended also that if the 
white man is the superior of the two, the Negro must be 
brought into sufficiently close contact with the whites so 
as to learn by example. Segregation will tend to keep one 
part of a community backward while the other is hopelessly 
struggling to go forward. 

A. H. GRIMKE, "A Defender of His 

The Negro and Social Justice 339 

In spite of this, however, the South has spoken out more 
boldly than ever for a more radical segregation of the race, 
with a view to preventing miscegenation. Southern lead 
ers believe that if you permit Negroes to be Radical 
elevated to positions of importance, it will be reaction, 
only a matter of a few generations before they will be suf 
ficiently attractive to white persons to promote the inter 
marriage of the races. Inalterably attached to their own 
ideal and believing in their superiority as the chosen peo 
ple of God in line of succession with the Jews, the whites 
have insisted upon all sorts of social and political proscrip 
tion, in fact, every measure necessary to discourage the 
recrudescence of the miscegenation of the races. There 
has been, therefore, among those southerners who have en 
deavored to fall in line with the radical democratic and 
social movement, a tendency to accept the program so far 
as it does not include the Negroes. As a natural conse 
quence, then, they have brought around to their way of 
thinking a large number of southern men who have gradu 
ally gained control of the northern press, idealizing the in 
stitutions of the South, pitying that section because of 
being handicapped by the presence of the Negro and de 
manding for the freedman exemption from unusual cruel 
ties and persecution only, while ignoring the clamor for 
recognition as a real citizen of the United States. 

To justify this position there have come forward a num 
ber of writers disguised as scientific investigators to prove 
by psychology and ethnology that the Negro is a sort of 
inferior being. They disregard the conten- Biased 
tion of the world s best scientists that no race investigators, 
is essentially inferior to any other race and that differ 
ences in civilization have resulted from varying opportuni 
ties and environments. Loath to give up this theory of 
superiority, however, they have devised various schemes to 
make a case for the natural superiority of the white man. 

340 The Negro In Our History 

Among these methods have been the collection of data in 
tended to show that the Negro is naturally a criminal. 
Some have made psychological measurements of various 
types of humanity with a view to proving that the Negro 
is mentally weaker than other peoples. Others are busy 
writing history of the countries outside of Africa to prove 
that the Negroes in Africa are inferior to races without. 

A passing remark as to these methods may be worth 
while. In almost all of the investigations as to the crime 
of the Negroes the evidence is ex parte. No man should 
Unscientific be condemned as a criminal merely on the 
conclusions. testimony of his enemies. In the matter of 
criminal statistics of the Negro the evidence is always 
questionable, for the white man is the sole judge. He 
makes the arrest, determines the guilt of the Negro, and 
applies the penalty. Just as during the days of slavery 
prejudiced masters spoke of the crimes of their slaves 
and branded free Negroes as pariahs of society, so now we 
hear the same concerning the Negroes. In other words, all 
of this evidence is from those persons who, making desire 
the father of thought, have issued statements without 
evidence to support them. Such so-called statistics of the 
whites adversely critical of the Negroes, against whom 
they are intensely prejudiced and to whom they have de 
nied the rights and privileges of men, are worthless in 
seeking the truth. 

In making some of the psychological measurements the 
experiments have been very interesting. One man found 
in a white school a Negro who showed more mental capac- 
Measurements ity than any other member of the institu- 
usedt tion. To explain this away in keeping with 

his theory that the Negro is inferior, he contended that the 
Negro far off in the North among the white people by him 
self was better selected than the whites. In another case, 
in which the purpose of the experiment was to prove that the 

The Negro and Social Justice 341 

Negro was inferior both to the Indian and white man, it 
was discovered that the Negro stood between the Indian 
and the white man. Adhering to the contention that the 
Negro was still inferior even to the Indian, the biased 
writer attributed the Negro s superior mental capacity to 
his closer contact with the white man. 

Until the students of the white race give the same atten 
tion to the study of Africa which they have given to the 
study of the history of Europe and Asia, they will be un 
prepared to reach any conclusions as to the Tlie 
sort of civilization which the Negro race has necessity for 
produced and its relative value. The fact 
is that the white man is still ignorant as to what has taken 
place in Africa. His knowledge is confined largely to the 
countries on the border and the reports of sporadic explora 
tions into the interior. Because the whites of modern 
times succeeded in finding in Africa slaves for exploita 
tion at the time when the country was torn to pieces by 
wars of migrating hordes, they have concluded that these 
weak captives in war, whom they enslaved and debased, 
must be taken as a sample of what the Negro is capable of. 
Yet if the Negroes of this country are to serve as an in 
dication of the capabilities of the race, it is both unscientific 
and unjust to expect the Negroes to pass through two 
hundred and fifty years of slavery and in three genera 
tions achieve as much as the whites have during many 
centuries. If they could, instead of thereby showing that 
they are equal to the whites, they would demonstrate their 

To disabuse the public mind of this slander proceeding 
from ill-designing investigators, C. G. Woodson organized 
the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History 
in Chicago in 1915, hoping to save and pub- The study of 
lish the records of the Negro, that the race the ***&<> 
may not become a negligible factor in the thought of the 

342 The Negro In Our History 

world. The work of this Association is to collect socio 
logical and historical data, to publish books on Negro life 
and history, to promote studies in this field through schools 
and clubs with a view to bringing about harmony be 
tween the races by interpreting the one to the other. The 
supporters of the movement have been well known philan 
thropists like Moorefield Storey, Julius Rosenwald and 
John D. Rockefeller, Jr., writers like Roland G. Usher, 
John M. Mecklin, Justice W. R. Riddell, Jerome Dowd, 
J. Franklin Jameson, and Charles H. Wesley, and pub 
licists like Frederick L. Hoffman, Talcott Williams, and 
Oswald Garrison Villard. For several years the Associa 
tion has published works bearing on all phases of the Negro 
and also The Journal of Negro History, a quarterly scien 
tific magazine which now circulates throughout the civilized 
world as a valuable help to students and investigators. 

A new note in the progress of the Negro has been 
sounded in the appeals of the churches and the civic 
organizations in behalf of a square deal for the Negro, 
as the murder of Negroes has led to the murder of white 
men and the whites, 2 therefore, call for a halt all along 
the line. Citizens of both races have been appointed by 
mayors, governors and the like to effect an agreement by 
which both races may live together for the greatest good 
of the greatest number. An effort also has been made 
to bridle the radical press which, during the last two gen 
erations, by playing up in bright headlines the crimes of 
Negroes and suppressing the similar crimes of whites, has 
inflamed the public mind against the Negroes as a natu 
rally criminal class. A new day is dawning. 

2 See Lincoln s speech on lynching in the Appendix. 


Speaking of the effect of the Missouri Compromise, John 
Quincy Adams, then Secretary of State, said: 

I said that this confounding of the ideas of servitude and labor 
was one of the bad effects of slavery; but he (Calhoun) thought it 
attended with many excellent consequences. It did not apply to all 
kinds of labor not, for example, to farming. He, himself, had 
often held the plow; so had his father. Manufacturing and me 
chanical labor were not degrading. It was only manual labor the 
proper work of slaves. No white person could descend to do that. 
And it was the best guarantee to equality among the whites. It 
produced an unvarying level among them. It not only did not excite, 
but did not even admit of inequalities, by which one white man 
could domineer over another. 

I told Calhoun I could not see things in the same light. It is, in 
truth, all perverted sentiment mistaking labor for slavery, and 
dominion for freedom. The discussion of this Missouri question haa 
betrayed the secret of their souls. In the abstract they admit that 
slavery is an evil, they disclaim all participation in the introduction 
of it, and cast it all upon the shoulders of our old Grandam Britain. 
But when probed to the quick upon it, they show at the bottom of 
their souls pride and vainglory in their condition of masterdom. 
They fancy themselves more generous and noble-hearted than the 
plain freemen who labor for subsistence. They look down upon the 
simplicity of a Yankee s manners, because he has not habits of over 
bearing like theirs and cannot treat negroes like dogs. It is among 
the evils of slavery that it taints the very sources of moral principles. 
It establishes false estimates of virtue and vice; for what can be 
more false and heartless than this doctrine which makes the first 
and holiest rights of humanity to depend upon the color of the skin ? 
It perverts human reason, and reduces men endowed with logical 
powers to maintain that slavery is sanctioned by the Christian re 
ligion, that slaves are happy and contented in their condition, that 
between master and slave there are ties of mutual attachment and 
affection, that the virtues of the master are refined and exalted by 
the degradation of the slave; while at the same time they vent execra 
tions upon the slave-trade, curse Britain for having given them 
slaves burn at the stake negroes convicted of crimes for the terror of 
the example, and writhe in agonies of fear at the very mention of 
human rights as applicable to men of color. The impression pro 
duced upon my mind by the progress of this discussion is, that 
the bargain between freedom and slavery contained m the Consti- 


344 Appendix 

tution of the United States is morally and politically vicious, in 
consistent with the principles upon which alone our Revolution can 
be justified; cruel and oppressive, by riveting the chains of slavery, 
by pledging the faith of freedom to maintain and perpetuate the 
tyranny of the master; and grossly unequal and impolitic by admit 
ting that slaves are at once enemies to be kept in subjection, 
property to be secured or restored to their owners, and persons not to 
be represented themselves, but for whom their masters are privileged 
with nearly a double share of representation. The consequence has 
been that this slave representation has governed the Union. Ben 
jamin portioned above his brethren has ravened as a wolf. In the 
morning he has devoured the prey, and at night he has divided the 
spoil. It would be no difficult matter to prove, by reviewing the 
history of the Union under this Constitution, that almost everything 
which has contributed to the honor and welfare of the nation has 
been accomplished in despite of them or forced upon them, and that 
everything unpropitious and dishonorable, including the blunders and 
follies of their adversaries, may be traced to them. I have favored 
this Missouri Compromise, believing it to be all that could be 
effected under the present Constitution and from extreme unwilling 
ness to put the Union at hazard. But perhaps it would have been 
a wiser as well as a bolder course to have persisted in the restriction 
upon Missouri, till it should have terminated in a convention of the 
States to amend and revise the Constitution. This would have 
produced a new Union of thirteen or fourteen States unpolluted 
with slavery, with a great and glorious object to effect, namely, that 
of rallying to their standard the other States by the universal 
emancipation of their slaves. If the Union must be dissolved, slavery 
is precisely the question upon which it ought to break. For the 
present, however, this contest is laid asleep. Stedman and Hutchin- 
Bon, American Literature (N. Y., 1888), IV, 213-233, passim. 

On these restrictions in Missouri John Sergeant, Pennsyl 
vania member of Congress and appointed commissioner to 
the Panama Congress, said : 

It is time to come to a conclusion ; I fear I have already trespassed 
too long. In the effort I have made to submit to the committee my 
views of this question, it has been impossible to escape entirely the 
influence of the sensation that pervades this House. Yet I have 
no such apprehensions as have been expressed. The question is in 
deed an important one; but its importance is derived altogether 
from its connection with the extension, indefinitely, of negro slavery, 
over a land which I trust Providence has destined for the labor and 
the support of freemen. I have no fear that this question, much as 
it has agitated the country, is to produce any fatal division, or even 
to generate a new organization of parties. It is not a question upon 
which we ought to indulge unreasonable apprehensions, or yield to 
the counsels of fear. It concerns ages to come and millions to be 
born. It is, as it were, a question of a new political creation, and it 
is for us, under Heaven, to say what shall be its condition. If we 

Appendix 345 

impose the restriction, it will, I hope, be finally imposed. But, if 
hereafter it should be found right to remove it, and the State 
consent, we can remove it. Admit the State, without the restriction, 
the power is gone forever, and with it are forever gone all the 
efforts that have been made by the non-slaveholding States, to repress 
and limit the sphere of slavery, and enlarge and extend the blessings 
of freedom. With it, perhaps, is gone forever the power of pre 
venting the traffic in slaves, that inhuman and detestable traffic, so 
long a disgrace to Christendom. In future, and no very distant times, 
convenience, and profit, and necessity, may be found as available 
pleas as they formerly were, and for the luxury of slaves, we shall 
again involve ourselves in the sin of the trade. We must not presume 
too much upon the strength of our resolutions. Let every man, who 
has been accustomed to the indulgence, ask himself if it is not a 
luxury a tempting luxury, which solicits him strongly and at every 
moment. The prompt obedience, the ready attention, the submissive 
and humble, but eager effort to anticipate command how flattering 
to our pride, how soothing to our indolence! To the members from 
the south I appeal, to know whether they will suffer any temporary 
inconvenience, or any speculative advantage to expose us to the 
danger. To those of the north, no appeal can be necessary. To both, 
I can most sincerely say, that as I know my own views on this 
subject to be free from any unworthy motive, so will I believe that 
they likewise have no object but the common good of our common 
country; and that nothing would have given me more heartfelt 
satisfaction than that the present proposition should have originated 
in the same quarter to which we are said to be indebted for the 
ordinance of 1787. Then, indeed, would Virginia have appeared in 
even more than her wonted splendor, and spreading out the scroll of 
her services, would have beheld none of them with greater pleasure, 
than that cries which began, by pleading the cause of humanity in 
remonstrances against the slave trade, while she was yet a colony, 
and embracing her own act of abolition, and the ordinance of 1787, 
terminated in the restriction of Missouri. Consider, what a founda 
tion our predecessors have laid! And behold, with the blessing of 
Providence, how the work has prospered! What is there, in ancient 
or in modern times, that can be compared with the growth and 
prosperity of the States formed out of the Northwest Territory? 
When Europeans reproach us with our negro slavery, when they con 
trast our republican boast and pretensions with the existence of this 
condition among us, we have our answer ready it is to you we owe 
this evil you planted it here, and it has taken such root in the soil 
we have not the power to eradicate it. Then, turning to the west, 
and directing their attention to Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois, we can 
proudly tell them, these are the offspring of our policy and our 
laws, these are the free productions of the constitution of the United 
States. But, if, beyond this smiling region, they should descry 
another dark spot upon the face of the new creation another scene 
of negro slavery, established by ourselves, and spreading continually 
towards the further ocean, what shall we say then? No, sir, let us 
follow up the work our ancestors have begun. Let us give to the 
world a new pledge of our sincerity. Let the standard of freedom 

346 Appendix 

be planted in Missouri, by the hands of the constitution, and let its 
banner wave over the heads of none but freedom men retaining the 
image impressed upon them by their Creator, and dependent upon 
none but God and the laws. Then, as our republican States extend, 
republican principles will go hand in hand with republican practice 
the love of liberty with the sense of justice. Then, sir, the dawn, 
beaming from the constitution, whicli now illuminates Ohio, Indiana, 
and Illinois, will spread with increasing brightness to the further 
west; until in its brilliant luster, the dark spot, which now rests 
upon our country, shall be forever hid from sight. Industry, arts, 
commerce, knowledge, will flourish with plenty and contentment for 
ages to come, and the loud chorus of universal freedom, re-echo from 
the Pacific to the Atlantic, the great truths of the declaration of 
independence. Then, too, our brethren of the south, if they sincerely 
wish it, may scatter their emancipated slaves through this boundless 
region, and our country, at length, be happily freed forever from 
the foul stain and curse of slavery. And if (may it be far, very far 
distant ! ) intestine commotion civil dissension division, should 
happen we shall not leave our posterity exposed to the combined 
horrors of a Civil and a servile war. If any man still hesitate, in 
fluenced by some temporary motive of convenience, or ease, or profit, 
I charge him to think what our fathers have suffered for us, and then 
to ask his heart, if he can be faithless to the obligation he owes to 
posterity! Moore, American Eloquence (N. Y., 1864), II, 531-532. 

Calhoun, the champion of the slaveholding interests and 
a fearless defender of the justice of slavery, thus com 
mented on abolition in 1837 : 

As widely as this incendiary spirit has spread, it has not yet in 
fected this body, or the great mass of the intelligent and business 
portion of the North ; but unless it be speedily stopped, it will spread 
and work upwards till it brings the two great sections of the Union 
into deadly conflict. This is not a new impression with me. Several 
years since, in a discussion with one of the Senators from Massachu 
setts ( Mr. Webster ) , before this fell spirit had showed itself, I then 
predicted that the doctrine of the proclamation and the Force Bill, 
that this Government had a right, in the last resort, to determine 
the extent of its own powers, and enforce its decision at the point 
of the bayonet, which was so warmly maintained by that Senator, 
would at no distant day arouse the dormant spirit of abolitionism. I 
told him that the doctrine was tantamount to the assumption of 
unlimited power on the part of the Government, and that such would 
be the impression on the public mind in a large portion of the Union. 
The consequences would be inevitable. A large portion of the North 
ern States believed slavery to be a sin, and would consider it as an 
obligation of conscience to abolish it if they should feel themselves in 
any degree responsible for its continuance, and that this doctrine 
would necessarily lead to the belief of such responsibility. . . . 

They who imagine that the spirit now abroad in the North will 
die away of itself without a shock or convulsion, have formed a 

Appendix 347 

very inadequate conception of its real character; it will continue to 
rise and spread, unless prompt and efficient measures to stay its 
progress be adopted. Already it has taken possession of the pulpit, 
of the schools, and, to a considerable extent, of the press; those great 
instruments by which the mind of the rising generation will be 

However sound the great body of the nonslaveholding States are 
at present, in the course of a few years they will be succeeded by 
those who will been taught to hate the people and institutions 
of nearly one-half of this Union, with a hatred more deadly than one 
hostile nation ever entertained toward another. It is easy to see the 
end. By the necessary course of events, if left to themselves, we must 
become, finally, two people. It is impossible under the deadly hatred 
which must spring up between the two great sections, if the present 
causes are permitted to operate unchecked, that we should continue 
under the same political system. The conflicting elements would 
burst the Union asunder, powerful as are the links which hold it 
together. Abolition and the Union cannot co-exist. As the friend of 
the Union, I openly proclaim it, and the sooner it is known the 
better. The former may now be controlled, but in a short time it 
will be beyond the power of man to arrest the course of events. 
We of the South will not, cannot, surrender our institutions. To 
maintain the existing relations between the two races, inhabiting 
that section of the Union, is indispensable to the peace and happiness 
of both. It cannot be subverted without drenching the country in 
blood, and extirpating one or the other of the races. Be it good or 
bad, it has grown up with our society and institutions, and is so 
interwoven with them, that to destroy it would be to destroy us as a 
people. But let me not be understood as admitting, even by implica 
tion, that the existing relations between the two races in the slave- 
holding States is an evil: far otherwise; I hold it to be a good, 
as it has thus far proved itself to be to both, and will continue to 
prove so if not disturbed by the fell spirit of abolition. . . . 

I feel myself called upon to speak freely upon the subject where 
the honor and interests of those I represent are involved. I hold 
then, that there never has yet existed a wealthy and civilized society 
in which one portion of the community did not, in point of fact, live 
on the labor of the other. Broad and general as is this assertion, it 
is fully borne out by history. ... I fearlessly assert that the existing 
relations between the two races in the South, against which these 
blind fanatics are waging war, forms the most solid and durable 
foundation on which to rear free and stable political institutions. 
It is useless to disguise the fact. There is and always has been in 
an advanced stage of wealth and civilization, a conflict between 
labor and capital. The condition of society in the South exempts us 
from the disorders and dangers resulting from this conflict; and 
which explains why it is that the political condition of the slave- 
holding States has been so much more stable and quiet than that 
of the North. The advantages of the former, in this respect, will 
become more and more manifest if left undisturbed by interference 
from without, as the country advances in wealth and numbers. We 
have, in fact, but just entered that condition of society where the 

348 Appendix 

strength and durability of our political institutions are to be tested ; 
and I venture nothing in predicting that the experience of the next 
generation will fully test how vastly more favorable our condition 
of society is to that of other sections for free and stable institutions, 
provided we are not disturbed by the interference of others, or shall 
have sufficient intelligence and spirit to resist promptly and suc 
cessfully such interference. It rests with ourselves to meet and 
repel them. I look not for aid to this Government or to the other 
States; not but there are kind feelings toward us on the part of the 
great body of the non-slaveholding States; but as kind as their 
feelings may be, we may rest assured that no political party in those 
States will risk their ascendance for our safety. If we do not 
defend ourselves none will defend us; if we yield we will be more 
and more pressed as we recede; and if we submit we will be tram 
pled under foot. Be assured that emancipation itself would not 
satisfy these fanatics; that gained, the next step would be to raise 
the negroes to a social and political equality with the whites; and 
that being effected, we would soon find the present condition of the 
two races reversed. . . . Calhoun, Speeches (N. Y., 1856), II, 628- 
633 passim. 

The beginnings of the Liberator are well set forth in this 
extract : 

To the Public. 

In the month of August I issued proposals for publishing the 
Liberator in Washington city; but the enterprise, though hailed in 
different sections of the country, was palsied by public indifference. 
Since that time, the removal of the Genius of Universal Emancipa 
tion to the Seat of Government has rendered less imperious the 
establishment of a similar periodical in that quarter. 

During my recent tour for the purpose of exciting the minds of 
the people by a series of discourses on the subject of slavery, every 
place that I visited gave fresh evidence of the fact, that a greater 
revolution in public sentiment was to be effected in the free States 
and particularly in New England than in the South. I found con 
tempt more bitter, opposition more active, detraction more relentless, 
prejudice more stubborn, and apathy more frozen, than among slave 
owners themselves. Of course, there were individual exceptions to 
the contrary. This state of things afflicted, but did not dishearten 
me. I determined, at every hazard, to lift up the standard of 
emancipation in the eyes of the nation, within sight of Bunker Hill 
and in the birthplace of liberty. That standard is now unfurled; 
and long may it float, unhurt by the spoliations of time or the 
missiles of a desperate foe yea, till every secret abettor tremble 
let their northern apologist tremble let all the enemies of the 
persecuted blacks tremble. . . . 

I shall not array myself as the political partisan of any man. In 
defending the great cause of human rights, I wish to derive the 
assistance of all religions and of all parties. 

Appendix 349 

Assenting to the "self-evident truth" maintained in the American 
Declaration of Independence, "that all men are created equal, and 
endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights among 
which are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness," I shall 
strenuously contend for the immediate enfranchisement of our slave 
population. In Park Street Church, on the Fourth of July, 1829, in 
an address on slavery, I unreflectingly assented to the popular but 
pernicious doctrine of gradual abolition. I seize this opportunity 
to make a full and unequivocal recantation, and thus publicly to ask 
pardon of my God, of my country, and of my brethren, the poor 
slaves, for having uttered a sentiment so full of timidity, injustice, 
and absurdity. A similar recantation, from my pen, was published 
in the Genius of Universal Emancipation, at Baltimore, in September, 
1829. My conscience is now satisfied. 

I am aware that many object to the severity of my language; but 
Is there not cause for severity? I will be as harsh as truth, and as 
uncompromising as justice. On this subject, I do not wish to think, 
or speak, or write, with moderation. No! no! Tell a man whose 
house is on fire to give a moderate alarm; tell him to moderately 
rescue his wife from the hands of the ravisher; tell the mother to 
gradually extricate her babe from the fire into which it has fallen, 
but urge me not to use moderation in a cause like the present. I am 
in earnest I will not equivocate I will not excuse I will not 
retreat a single inch and I will be heard. The apathy of the people 
is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal, and to hasten 
the resurrection of the dead. 

It is pretended that I am retarding the cause of emancipation by 
the coarseness of my invective and the precipitancy of my measures. 
The charge is not true. On this question my influence, humble as it 
is, is felt at this moment to a considerable extent, and shall be felt 
in coming years not perniciously, but beneficially not as a curse, 
but as a blessing; and posterity will bear testimony that I was 
right. I desire to thank God, that he enables me to disregard "the 
fear of man which bringeth a snare," and to speak his truth in its 
simplicity and power. And here I close with this fresh dedication : 

Oppression! I have seen thee face to face, 

And met thy cruel eye and cloudy brow; 

But thy soul-withering glance I fear not now 

For dread to prouder feelings doth give place 

Of deep abhorrence! Scorning the disgrace 

Of slavish knees that at thy footstool bow, 

I also kneel but with far other vow 

Do hail thee and thy herd of hirelings base: 

I swear, while life-blood warms my throbbing veins, 

Still to oppose and thwart, with heart and hand, 

Thy brutalizing sway till Afric s chains 

Are burst, and Freedom rules the rescued land, 

Trampling Oppression and iron rod: 

Such is the vow I take so help me God! 

W. L. Garrison, Works (Boston, 1905), pp. 70-73. 

350 Appendix 

The constitution of the American Antislavery Society 
was : 

Whereas, the Most High God "hath made of one blood all nations 
of men to dwell on all the face of the earth," and hath commanded 
them to love their neighbors as themselves ; and whereas, our National 
Existence is based on this principle, as recognized in the Declaration 
of Independence, "that all mankind are created equal, and that they 
are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, among 
which are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness"; and whereas, 
after the lapse of nearly sixty years, since the faith and honor of the 
American people were pledged to this avowal, before Almighty God 
and the World, nearly one-sixth part of the nation are held in bond 
age by their fellow-citizens; and whereas, Slavery is contrary to the 
principles of natural justice, of our republican form of government, 
and of the Christian religion, and is destructive of the prosperity 
of the country, while it is endangering the peace, union, and liberties 
of the States; and whereas, we believe it the duty and interest of the 
masters immediately to emancipate their slaves, and that no scheme 
of expatriation, either voluntary or by compulsion, can remove this 
great and increasing evil; and whereas, we believe that it is prac 
ticable, by appeals to the consciences, hearts, and interests of the 
people, to awaken a public sentiment throughout the nation that will 
be opposed to the continuance of Slavery in any part of the Republic, 
and by effecting the speedy abolition of Slavery, prevent a general 
convulsion; and whereas, we believe we owe it to the oppressed, to 
our fellow-citizens who hold slaves, to our whole country, to posterity, 
and to God, to do all that is lawfully in our power to bring about 
the extinction of Slavery, we do hereby agree, with a prayerful re 
liance on the Divine aid, to form ourselves into a society, to be 
governed by the following Constitution: 

Article I. This Society shall be called The American Antislavery 

Article II. The objects of this Society are the entire abolition of 
slavery in the United States. While it admits that each State, in 
which Slavery exists, has, by the Constitution of the United States, 
the exclusive right to legislate in regard to its abolition in said 
State, it shall aim to convince all our fellow-citizens, by arguments 
addressed to their understandings and consciences, that Slavehold- 
ing is a heinous crime in the sight of God, and that the duty, safety, 
and best interests of all concerned, require its immediate abandon 
ment, without expatriation. The Society will also endeavor, in a 
constitutional way, to influence Congress to put an end to the 
domestic Slave trade, and to abolish Slavery in all those portions of 
our common country which come under its control, especially in the 
District of Columbia, and likewise to prevent the extension of it to 
any State that may be hereafter admitted to the Union. 

Article III. This Society shall aim to elevate the character and 
condition of the people of color, by encouraging their intellectual, 
moral, and religious improvement, and by removing public prejudice, 
that thus they may, according to their intellectual moral worth, share 

Appendix 351 

an equality with the whites, of civil and religious privileges ; but this 
Society will never in any way countenance the oppressed in vindi 
cating their rights by resorting to physical force. 

Article IV. Any person who consents to the principles of this 
Constitution, who contributes to the funds of this Society, and is 
not a Slaveholder, may be a member of this Society, and shall be 
entitled to vote at the meetings. 

The text is in a pamphlet, entitled Platform of the American Anti- 
slavery Society and Its Auxiliaries (New York, 1855), pp. 3, 4. 
The fullest account of the convention is in William Lloyd Garrison: 
Story of His Life Told by His Children, I, pp. 392-415, where is also 
a copy of the Declaration. The Declaration is also in the pamphlet 
above cited. For Whittier s account, see Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 
XXXIII, pp. 166-172. (February, 1874.) 

This appeal of a Southern Matron for patience is a case 
in evidence of the thinking element in the South: 

Shut your eyes no longer, my countrymen the Union is threatened ; 
and all the blessings it confers, and which our fathers suffered and 
died to attain, must perish with it. Scorn not the feeble voice of a 
woman, when she calls on you to awake to your danger, ere it be 
forever too late. We are told that the citizens of the North would 
arouse our slaves to exert their physical force against us but we 
cannot, we will not believe the foul, shocking, unnatural tale. What ! 
have the daughters of the South inflicted such injuries on their 
Northern brethren, as to render them objects of their deadly, ex 
terminating hate? Have helpless age, smiling infancy, virgin purity 
no claims on the generous, the highminded and the brave? Would 
they introduce the serpents of fear and withering anxiety into the 
Edens of domestic bliss; bathe our peaceful hearths with blood, and 
force us to abhor those ties which now unite us as one people, and 
which we so lately taught our sons to regard as our pride ? We can 
not believe it. We cannot be so unjust to the enlightened and humane 
citizens of the Northern States, as to suppose for a moment that 
they approve of the course pursued by those reckless agitators who 
seek to inflict such cruel calamities on the South. The poor slave 
himself merits not at their hands the mischief and woe which his 
mistaken advocates would heap on his devoted head; for even they 
cannot imagine that an exertion of physical force on their part could 
result in aught but his destruction. No the Northern people are too 
well acquainted with historical facts, to condemn u for evils which 
we deprecated as warmly as themselves, but which were ruthlessly 
imposed on us by the power of Great Britain. 

So far from condemning, they must sympathize with us; for they 
well know that slavery was forced upon us, and that as early as 17bl 
the Southern colonies earnestly sought to avert it by passing acts 
imposing duties on slaves, and even prohibiting their importation. In 
spite of sectional prejudices (alas, too often fostered for the worst 
ends by the unprincipled and ambitious) in spite of conflicting in- 

352 Appendix 

tcrests, the people of the North are our brethren. Together our 
fathers shared many a peril. Side by side, they fought and bled in 
defense of their common country. Their united wisdom was exerted 
to form our glorious Constitution, and these republican institutions, 
which so justly are our boast, and the safeguard of our liberties. 
Would the sons overthrow the noble fabric their fathers assisted to 
rear, even now, when towering aloft in its majesty and beauty, it 
attracts the admiration of the world? We cannot believe they are 
prepared for so suicidal an act. The States are all more or less 
dependent on each other. Let one portion be weakened and depressed, 
the whole must ultimately suffer. Oh ! that a spirit of compromise, 
forbearance, and brotherly love could be infused into our coun 
cils, and animate the bosoms of our public men. Then the voice 
of contention would be hushed into silence. The insidious treach 
ery of the incendiary would meet the contempt it merits, and 
factious demagogues would shrink abashed beneath the deep, 
stern voice of a nation s censure. Then the daughters of Amer 
ica could look joyfully on their sons and indulge the proud 
hope that they and their children would live and die the free 
and happy citizens of the great, nourishing and United States of 

Deluded emancipators of the North, we now appeal to you! We 
deprecate slavery as much as you. W T e as ardently desire the lib 
erty of the whole human race; but what can we do? The slow hand 
of time must overcome these difficulties now insurmountable. An 
evil, the growth of ages, cannot be remedied in a day. Our virtuous 
and enlightened men will doubtless effect much by cautious exertion, 
if their efforts are not checked by your rash attempts to dictate on a 
subject on which it is impossible that you can form a correct judg 
ment. Forbear your inflammatory addresses. They but rivet the 
fetters of the slaves, and render them ten thousand times more gall 
ing. You sacrifice his happiness, as well as that of his owner, for, 
by rendering him an object of suspicion and alarm you deprive him 
of the regard, confidence, and, I may add, with the utmost truth, 
the affection of his master. You render a being now light-hearted 
and joyous, moody, wretched yes, hopelessly wretched. You wreak 
on the innocent and helpless, who, had they the will, possess not the 
power to bid the slave be free from all his imagined wrongs. You 
agonize gentle bosoms, which glow with Christian charity towards 
the whole human race, of whatever color they may be. Fearful 
forebodings mingle with all a deep, imperishable love, as the matron 
bends over the infant that smiles in her face, and with more shud 
dering horror, she trembles as she gazes on the daughters, whose 
youthful beauty, goodness and grace shed the sunshine of joy and 
hope over the winter of life. I appeal to you as Christians, as 
patriots, as men, generous, highminded men, to forbear. By all 
you hold sacred by your own feelings or the wives of your bosom 
and the children of your love, pause and reflect on the mischief 
and woe you seek to inflict on both the white and colored population 
of the Southern States. . . . 

"A Southern Nation," The Colonizationist (Boston, 1834), 75-77. 

Appendix 353 

The following speech of John Quincy Adams shows his 
later attitude on slavery and the like : 

The inconsistency of the institution of domestic slavery with the 
principles of the Declaration of Independence was seen and lamented 
by all the Southern patriots of the Revolution; by no one with 
deeper and more unalterable conviction than by the author of the 
Declaration himself. No insincerity or hypocrisy can fairly be laid 
to their charge. Never from their lips was heard one syllable of 
attempt to justify the institution of slavery. They universally con 
sidered it as a reproach fastened upon them by the unnatural step 
mother country; and they saw that, before the principles of the 
Declaration of Independence, slavery, in common with every other 
mode of oppression, was destined sooner or later to be banished 
from the earth. Such was the undoubting conviction of Jefferson 
to his dying day. In the memoir of his life, written at the age of 
seventy-seven, he gave to his countrymen the solemn and emphatic 
warning that the day was not distant when they must hear and 
adopt the general emancipation of their slaves. "Nothing is more 
certainly written," said he, "in the book of fate, than that these 
people are to be free. My countrymen! It is written in a better 
volume than the book of fate; it is written in the laws of Nature 
and of Nature s God." 

We are told, indeed, by the learned doctors of the nullification 
school, that color operates as a forfeiture of the rights of human 
nature; that a dark skin turns a man into a chattel; that crispy 
hair transforms a human being into a four-footed beast. The master- 
priest informs you that slavery is consecrated and sanctified by the 
Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testament; that Ham waa 
the father of Canaan, and all his posterity were doomed, by his own 
father, to be hewers of wood and drawers of water to the descendants 
of Shem and Japhet; that the native Americans of African descent 
are the children of Ham, with the curse of Noah still fastened upon 
them; and the native Americans of European descent are children of 
Japhet, pure Anglo-Saxon blood, born to command, and to live by 
the sweat of another s brow. The master-philosopher teaches you 
that slavery is no curse, but a blessing! that Providence Providence! 
has so ordered it that this country should be inhabited by two 
races of men, one born to wield the scourge, and the other to bear 
the record of its stripes upon his back; one to earn, through a toil 
some life, the other s bread, and to feed him on a bed of roses; that 
slavery is the guardian and promoter of wisdom and virtue; that 
the slave, by laboring for another s enjoyment, learns disinterested 
ness and humility; that the master, nurtured, clothed, and sheltered, 
by another s toils, learns to be generous and grateful to the slave, 
and sometimes to feel for him as a father for his child; that, 
released from the necessity of supplying his own wants, he acquires 
opportunity of leisure to improve his mind, to purify his heart, to 
cultivate his taste ; that he has time on his hands to plunge into the 
depths of philosophy, and to soar to the clear empyrean or seraphic 
morality. The master-statesman ay, the statesman in the land 

354 Appendix 

of the Declaration of Independence, in the halls of national legisla 
tion, with the muse of history recording his words as they drop 
from his lips, with the colossal figure of American Liberty leaning 
on a column entwined with the emblem of eternity over his head, 
with the forms of Washington and Lafayette speaking to him from 
the canvas turns to the image of the father of his country, and, 
forgetting that the last act of his life was to emancipate his slaves, 
to bolster up the cause of slavery, says, "That man was a slave 

My countrymen! these are the tenets of the modern nullification 
school. Can you wonder that they shrink from the light of free 
discussion that they skulk from the grasp of freedom and of truth? 
Is there among you one who hears me, solicitous above all things for 
the preservation of the Union so truly dear to us of that Union pro 
claimed in the Declaration of Independence of that Union never to 
be divided by any act whatever and who dreads that the discussion 
of the merits of slavery will endanger the continuance of the Union? 
Let him discard his terrors, and be assured that they are no other 
than the phantom fears of nullification; that, while doctrines 
like these are taught in her schools of philosophy, preached in her 
pulpits, and avowed in her legislative councils, the free, unrestrained 
discussion of the rights and wrongs of slavery, far from endangering 
the Union of these States, is the only condition upon which that 
Union can be preserved and perpetuated. What! are you to be told, 
with one breath, that the transcendent glory of this day consists in 
the proclamation that all lawful government is founded on the 
inalienable rights of man, and, with the next breath, that you 
must not whisper this truth to the winds, lest they should taint 
the atmosphere with freedom, and kindle the flame of insurrection? 
Are you to bless the earth beneath your feet because she spurna 
the footsteps of a slave, and then to choke the utterance of your 
voice lest the sound of liberty should be reechoed from the palmetto 
groves, .mingled with the discordant notes of disunion? No! no! 
Freedom of speech is the only safety-valve which, under the high 
pressure of slavery, can preserve your political boiler from a fearful 
and fatal explosion. Let it be admitted that slavery is an institu 
tion of internal police, exclusively subject to the separate jurisdic 
tion of the States where it is cherished as a blessing, or tolerated aa 
an evil as yet irremediable. But let that slavery which intrenches 
itself within the walls of her own impregnable fortress not sally 
forth to conquest over the domain of freedom. Intrude not beyond 
the hallowed bounds of oppression; but, if you have by solemn 
compact doomed your ears to hear the distant clanking of the chain, 
let not the fetters of the slave be forged afresh upon your own 
eoil ; far less permit them to be riveted upon your own feet. Quench 
not the spirit of freedom. Let it go forth, not in panoply of fleshly 
wisdom, but with the promise of peace, and the voice of per 
suasion, clad in the whole armor of truth, conquering and to con 

Josiah Quiney, Memoir of the Life of John Quwcy Adams (Boston, 
1858), 272-275. 

Appendix 355 

In the following speech Joshua R. Giddings attacked the 
policy of yielding ground to slavery : 

It is well known, Mr. Chairman, that, since the formation of this 
confederacy, there has been a supposed conflict between the southern 
and the northern States. I do not say that the conflict is real; I 
only say that, in the minds of the people, both North and South, and 
in this hall, such a conflict exists. This has given rise to a differ 
ence of policy in our national councils. I refer to the tariff in 
particular, as being a favorite measure of the North, while free trade 
is advocated more generally by the South. I refer also to our 
harbor improvements, and the improvement of our river navigation, 
as another measure in which the Northwest and West have felt 
great interest, and to which the South have been constantly op 
posed. But so equally balanced has been the political power, be 
tween these opposing interests, that for five years past our lake 
commerce has been entirely abandoned; and such were the defects 
of the tariff, that for many years our revenues were unequal to 
the support of government. 

By the fixed order of nature s law, our population at the North 
has increased so much faster than it has in the slave States, that 
under the late census the North and West hold the balance of po 
litical power; and at the present session we have passed through 
this body a bill for the protection of our lake and river commerce, 
which awaits the action of the Senate to become a law. But let 
us admit Texas, and we shall place the balance of power in the 
hands of Texas. They, with the southern States, will control the 
policy and the destiny of this nation ; our tariff will then be held at 
the will of the Texan advocates of free trade. 

Are our friends of the North prepared to deliver over this policy 
to the people of Texas? Are the liberty-loving democrats of Penn 
sylvania ready to give up the tariff? To strike off all protection 
from the articles of iron and coal and other productions of that 
State, in order to purchase a slave-market for their neighbors, who, 
in the words of Thomas Jefferson Randolph, "breed men for the 
market like oxen for the shambles?" 

I do not argue to the policy of protecting our American manu 
factures. I only say, that at this time, New England and the free 
States generally are in favor of it, while the slave States are equally 
opposed to it. And I ask are the mechanics and manufacturers of the 
North prepared to abandon their employments, in order that slave- 
markets may be established in Texas, and a brisk traffic in bodies, 
the flesh and blood of our southern population may be maintained ? 
Are the farmers of the West, of Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois, pre 
pared to give up the sale of their beef, pork, and flour, in order 
to increase the profits of those who raise children for sale, and 
deal in the bodies of women? Are the free States prepared to 
suspend their harbor and river improvements for the purpose of 
establishing this slave-trade with Texas, and to perpetuate slavery 
therein ? 

But, if Texas be admitted to the Union, it is to be a slave- 
holding State, out of which several States are hereafter to be ad- 

356 Appendix 

mitted, with the advantages over our free States of holding a 
representation on this floor, and a vote in the election of president 
and vice-president, and in the administration of the federal govern 
ment, in proportion to the number of slaves they shall hold in 
bondage. In other words, their influence on all these subjects is to 
be proportioned to their contempt of liberty. The Texan, who 
holds five slaves, is to wield an influence over our national interests 
equal to four of our northern freemen. If each holds fifty slaves, 
his influence will be equal to that of thirty-one of the independent 
electors of the free States. I ask the learned gentleman from 
Indiana (Mr. Owen) if he really estimates the political worth of his 
constituents so low as to require thirty-one of them to form an 
aggregate of political influence equal to that of the piratical owner 
of fift_ "human chattels" in Texas? Or does he estimate his own 
political worth at one-fourth part of that which he attaches to the 
holder of five slaves in Texas? I wish gentlemen here would speak 
out, and let us know the real estimate which they put upon the 
moral and political worth of northern men? Would to God I were 
able to speak to every man of every party, north of Mason and 
Dixon s Line. I would demand of them as men, as freemen, to 
come forward, and let the country understand whether any one of 
them is willing thus to degrade himself; or whether any one of 
them is willing to be thus degraded by his representatives in this 
hall. This proposition, come from whom it may, from persons high 
in office, or from those wishing to be high in office, is insulting to 
northern feeling and northern honor. Sir, why not propose at once 
that our people shall surrender themselves as slaves to the Texan 
planters? Why not advise the people of our free States at once 
to leave their homes, to go to Texas, and become the voluntary 
"hewers of wood and drawers of water" to those fugitive criminals, 
who, within the last fifteen years, were driven from the United 
States to avoid punishment for their crimes? . . . 

Joshua R. Giddings, Speeches in Congress (Boston, 1853), 104-106. 

As the following extract from his speech shows, Sumner 
believed in the equality of all men before the law. He said : 

The way is now prepared to consider the nature of Equality, as 
Becured by the Constitution of Massachusetts. The Declaration of 
Independence, which followed the French Encyclopedia and the po 
litical writings of Rousseau, announces among self-evident truths, 
"that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their 
Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, 
liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." The Constitution of Massa 
chusetts repeats the same truth in a different form, saying, in its 
first article: "All men are born free and equal, and have certain 
natural essential, and unalienable rights, among which may be 
reckoned the right of enjoying and defending their lives and lib 
erties." Another article explains what is meant by Equality, saying: 
"No man, nor corporation or association of men, have any other title 

Appendix 357 

to obtain advantages, or particular and exclusive privileges, distinct 
from those of the community, that what arises from the consider 
ation of services rendered to the public ; and this title being in nature 
neither hereditary, nor transmissible to children, or descendants, or 
relations by blood, the idea of a man being born a magistrate, law 
giver, or judge is absurd and unnatural." This language, in its 
natural signification, condemns every form of inequality in civil and 
political institutions. 

These declarations, though in point of time before the ampler 
declarations of France, may be construed in the light of the latter. 
Evidently they seek to declare the same principle. They are decla 
rations of Rights; and the language employed, though general in 
character, is obviously limited to those matters within the design 
of a declaration of Rights. And permit me to say, it is a childish 
Bophism to adduce any physical or mental inequality in argument 
against Equality of Rights. 

Obviously, men are not born equal in physical strength or in 
mental capacity, in beauty of form or health of body. Diversity 
or inequality in these respects is the law of creation. From 
this difference springs divine harmony. But this inequality is 
in no particular inconsistent with complete civil and political 

The equality declared by our fathers in 1776, and made the 
fundamental law of Massachusetts in 1780, was Equality before the 
Law. Its object was to efface all political or civil distinctions, and 
to abolish all institutions founded upon birth. "All men are created 
equal," says the Declaration of Independence. "All men are born 
free and equal," says the Massachusetts Bill of Rights. These are 
not vain words. Within the sphere of their influence, no person 
can be created, no person can be born with civil or political privi 
leges not enjoyed equally by all his fellow-citizens; nor can any 
institution be established, recognizing distinction of birth. Here is 
the Great Charter of every human being drawing vital breath upon 
this soil, whatever may be his condition, and whoever may be his 
parents. He may be poor, weak, humble, or black; he may be of 
Caucasian, Jewish, Indian, or Ethiopian race, he may be of French, 
German, English, or Irish extraction; but before the Constitution 
of Massachusetts all these distinctions disappear. He is not poor, 
weak, humble, or black; nor is he Caucasian, Jew, Indian, or 
Ethiopian; nor is he French, German, English, or Irish; he is a MAN, 
the equal of all his fellow-men. He is one of the children of the 
State, which, like an impartial parent, regards all its offsprings with 
an equal care. To some it may justly allot higher duties, according 
to higher capacities; but it welcomes all to its equal hospitable 
board. The State, imitating the divine justice, is no respecter of 

Here nobility cannot exist, because it is a privilege from birth. But 
the same anathema which smites and banishes nobility must also 
smite and banish every form of discrimination founded on birth, 

"Quamvis ille niger, quamvis tu candidus esses." 

Charles Sumner, Works (Boston, 1875), II, 340-342. 

358 Appendix 

Voicing a strong protest against the theory that the 
rightfulness of slavery must not be publicly discussed or 
questioned, Joshua R. Giddings said : 

Sir, certain Senators in the other end of the capitol have for 
months been endeavoring to convince the people of the necessity of 
passing the "omnibus bill," as it is called. No arguments could be 
raised in favor of that measure, for it was not founded on reason. 
One consideration alone was pressed upon the public mind. The 
cry was raised that "the Union was in danger!" The newspapers here 
responded, "the Union is in danger!" The country press repeated 
the alarm. The cry was caught up and echoed by every timid, 
faltering poltroon of the North. Petitions to "save the Union" 
were circulated. Public meetings were held in our commercial cities 
where Texas scrip was mostly influential, and resolutions were 
adopted "to save the Union." The supplications were not that we 
"may legislate in righteousness," deal out justice and mercy to 
those who are oppressed and degraded by our laws. These were 
regarded as objects of trifling importance, when compared with the 
pending danger that Texas would dissolve the Union. Indeed, they 
are never mentioned by our chaplain. 

Sir, I am nauseated, sickened at this moral and political effem 
inacy; this downright cowardice. It is unworthy of American states 
men. Our constituents sent us here to maintain and defend their 
rights; not to surrender them; not to make ourselves and our people 
tributary to Texas. In electing us, they had no expectation that 
we would turn upon them and violently thrust our hands into their 
pockets and take therefrom ten millions of dollars, and hand it over 
to the slave-holders of Texas, for territory which belongs to us, and 
to which Texas never had any title whatever. 

Sir, gentlemen here may say what they please; the people have no 
fears of a dissolution of the Union. They understand this kind of 
gasconade. The cry of "dissolution" has been the dernier resort of 
southern men for fifty years, whenever they desired to frighten 
doughfaces into a compliance with their measures. It may alarm 
gentlemen here; but I do not think you can find in northern Ohio an 
equal number of nervous old women or of love-sick girls, who could 
be moved by it. 

Again, it is said that we must stop this agitation in relation to 
slavery! The people see us here passing laws to enslave our fellow 
men; to sell women in open market; to create a traffic in the bodies 
of children. They know this to be opposed to the self-evident truth 
that "all men are created equal," "that governments are constituted 
to sustain that equality of rights"; and they converse on the sub 
ject, examine the reasons on which such traffic is based, and vote 
for men who will oppose such barbarous practices. This is called 
agitation; and gentlemen here talk of suppressing it by passing 
such laws as that on your table. This is the manner in which we 
are to stop the progress of truth; to seal the lips of philanthropists; 
and to silence the voice of humanity. Yes, Sir, it is gravely proposed 

Appendix 359 

that we should set bounds to the human intellect, and to limit 
political investigations by statute laws. 

Sir, the great founder of our holy religion, when he proclaimed the 
Heaven-born truths of his Gospel, was denounced as an "agitator." 
He was arrested, condemned, and executed for asserting truths which 
the Scribes and Pharisees were too stupid to comprehend. It was 
done to stop agitation; but truth, emanating from "the Holy One," 
has extended, spread, and progressed, and will "go on conquering and 
to conquer," in spite of all the political Scribes and Pharisees in 
Congress, and the quaking and trembling of dough-faces here and 

This progress in morals and in political intelligence is in strict 
accordance with the law of our being, and cannot be prevented. The 
idea of setting bounds to the human intellect, of circumscribing it 
by statute law, is preposterous. Why not limit the arts and 
sciences by conservative legislation, as well as moral and political 
progress? Why not follow the example of those who attempted to 
stop the agitation of Galileo, when he proclaimed the truth of our 
solar system, and the laws by which the planets are retained in 
their orbits? He caused great agitation, and was excommunicated 
for his infidelity, in thus daring to proclaim truths which the 
conservatives of that age were too ignorant to comprehend. It 
required two hundred and fifty years for the stupid clergy of that 
day to understand the truths for which he had been expelled from 
their Christian fellowship. How long it will require certain theo 
logical professors of the present day to comprehend the "self-evident 
truths" of man s equality, is not yet determined. Or how long it will 
require our political doctors to comprehend the very obvious fact 
that an educated and reflecting people will think and act for 
themselves, is yet to be ascertained. 

But, if we are to have conservative legislation, let us tear down 
the telegraphic wires, break up our galvanic batteries, and imprison 
Morse, and stop all agitation upon the subject of your "magnetic rail 
roads of thought." Lay up your steamboats, place fetters upon your 
locomotives, convert your railroads into cultivated fields, and erase 
the name of Fulton from our history. Go down to yonder Institute, 
drive Page from his laboratory, break in pieces his galvanic en 
gines, and unchain the imprisoned lightning which is there pent up ; 
then pass an act of Congress prohibiting all further agitation on 
these subjects, and thus carry out your conservative principles, of 
which some men are continually boasting. . . . 

Joshua R. Giddings, Speeches in Congress (Boston, 1853), 409-411. 

Giving great offense to Jefferson Davis and other South 
ern friends, William H. Seward spoke thus for The Higher 
Law than the Constitution: 

There is another aspect of the principle of compromise which 
deserves consideration. It assumes that slavery, if not the only 
institution in a slave State, is at least a ruling institution, and 

360 Appendix 

that this characteristic is recognized by the Constitution. But 
slavery is only one of many institutions there. Freedom is equally 
an institution there. Slavery is only a temporary, accidental, partial, 
and incongruous one. Freedom, on the contrary, is a perpetual, 
organic, universal one, in harmony with the Constitution of the 
United States. The slaveholder himself stands under the protection 
of the latter, in common with all the free citizens of that state. But 
it is, moreover, an indispensable institution. You may separate 
slavery from South Carolina, and the state will still remain; but if 
you subvert freedom there, the state will cease to exist. But the 
principle of this compromise gives complete ascendency in the slave 
states, and in the Constitution of the United States, to the sub 
ordinate, accidental, and incongruous institution, over its paramount 
antagonist. To reduce this claim of slavery to an absurdity, it is 
only necessary to add that there are only two states in which slaves 
are a majority, and not one in which the slaveholders are not a very 
disproportionate minority. 

But there is yet another aspect in which this principle must be 
examined. It regards the domain only as a possession, to be enjoyed 
either in common or by partition by the citizens of the old states. 
It is true, indeed, that the national domain is ours. It is true it 
was acquired by the valor and with the wealth of the whole nation. 
But we hold, nevertheless, no arbitrary power over it. We hold 
no arbitrary authority over anything, whether acquired lawfully 
or seized by usurpation. The Constitution regulates our steward 
ship; the Constitution devotes the domain to union, to justice, to 
defense, to welfare, and to liberty. 

But there is a higher law than the Constitution, which regulates 
our authority over the domain, and devotes it to the same noble 
purposes. The territory is a part, no inconsiderable part, of the 
common heritage of mankind bestowed upon them by the Creator of 
the universe. We are his stewards, and must so discharge our trust 
as to secure in the highest attainable degree their happiness. How 
momentous that trust is we may learn from the instructions of the 
founder of modern philosophy: 

"No man," says Bacon, "can by care-taking, as the Scripture saith, 
add a cubit to his stature in this little model of a man s body; 
but, in the great frame of kingdoms and commonwealths, it is in the 
power of princes or estates to add amplitude and greatness to their 
kingdoms. For, by introducing such ordinances, constitutions, and 
customs, as are wise, they may sow greatness to their posterity and 
successors. But these things are commonly not observed, but left 
to take their chance." 

This is a state, and we are deliberating for it, just as our 
fathers deliberated in establishing the institutions we enjoy. What 
ever superiority there is in our condition and hopes over those of 
any other "kingdom" or "estate" is due to the fortunate circum 
stance that our ancestors did not leave things to "take their 
chance," but that they "added amplitude and greatness" to our 
common-wealth "by introducing such ordinances, constitutions, and 
customs, as were wise." We in our turn have succeeded to the 
same responsibilities, and we cannot approach the duty before us 

Appendix 361 

wisely or justly, except we raise ourselves to the great consideration 
of how we can most certainly "sow greatness to our posterity and 

And now the simple, bold, and even awful, question which presents 
Itself to us is this: Shall we, who are founding institutions, social 
and political, for countless millions; shall we, who know by experi 
ence the wise and the just, and are free to choose them, and to reject 
the erroneous and unjust; shall we establish human bondage, or 
permit it by our sufferance to be established? Sir, our forefathers 
would not have hesitated an hour. They found slavery existing 
here, and they left it only because they could not remove it. There 
is not only no free State which would now establish it, but there is 
no slave State, which, if it had had the free alternative as we 
now have, would have founded slavery. Indeed, our revolutionary 
predecessors had precisely the same question before them in estab 
lishing an organic law under which the states of Ohio, Indiana, 
Michigan, Illinois, and Wisconsin, have since come into the Union, 
and they solemnly repudiated and excluded slavery from those states 
forever. I confess that the most alarming evidence of our degeneracy 
which has yet been given is found in the fact that we even debate 
such a question. . . . 

The senator proposes to expel me. I am ready to meet that trial, 
too; and if I shall be expelled, I shall not be the first man subjected 
to punishment for maintaining that there is a power higher than 
human law, and that power delights in justice; that rulers, whether 
despots or elected rulers of a free people, are bound to administer 
justice for the benefit of society. 

William H. Seward, Works (N. Y., 1853), I, pp. 74-129. 

The following speech from Lincoln exposed the fallacy of 
the so-called reasonableness of slavery: 

Equality in society alike beats inequality, whether the latter be 
of the British aristocratic sort or of the domestic slavery sort. We 
know Southern men declare that their slaves are better off than 
hired laborers among us. How little they know whereof they speak! 
There is no permanent class of hired laborers amongst us. Twenty- 
five years ago I was a hired laborer. The hired laborer of yesterday 
labors on his own account to-day, and will hire others to labor for 
him to-morrow. Advancement improvement in condition is the 
order of things in a society of equals. As labor is the common 
burden of our race, so the effort of some to shift their share of 
the burden onto the shoulders of others is the great durable curse of 
the race. Originally a curse for transgression upon the whole race, 
when, as by slavery, it is concentrated on a part only, it becomes 
the double-refined curse of God upon his creatures. 

Free labor has the inspiration of hope; pure slavery has no hope. 
The power of hope upon human exertion and happiness is wonderful. 
The slave-master himself has a conception of it, and hence the system 
of tasks among slaves. The slave whom you cannot drive with the 
lash to break seventy-five pounds of hemp in a day, if you will ask 

362 Appendix 

him to break a hundred, and promise him pay for all he does over, 
he will break you a hundred and fifty. You have substituted hope 
for the rod. And yet perhaps it does not occur to you that to the 
extent of your gain in the case, you have given up the slave system 
and adopted the free system of labor. 

If A can prove, however, conclusively, that he may of right enslave 
B, why may not B snatch the same argument and prove equally that 
he may enslave A? You say A is white and B is black. It ia 
color, then; the lighter having the right to enslave the darker? 
Take care. By this rule you are to be slave to the first man you 
meet with a fairer skin than your own. You do not mean color 
exactly? You mean the whites are intellectually the superiors of the 
blacks, and therefore have the right to enslave them? Take care 
again. By this rule you are to be slave to the first man you meet 
with an intellect superior to your own. But, you say, it is a ques 
tion of interest, and if you make it your interest you have the right 
to enslave another. Very well. And if he can make it his interest 
he has the right to enslave you. 

The ant who has toiled and dragged a crumb to his nest will 
furiously defend the fruit of his labor against whatever robber 
assails him. So plain that the most dumb and stupid slave that ever 
toiled for a master does constantly know that he is wronged. So 
plain that no one, high or low, ever does mistake it, except in a 
plainly selfish way; for although volume upon volume is written to 
prove slavery a very good thing, we never hear of the man who wishes 
to take the good of it by being a slave himself. 

Most governments have been based, practically, on the denial of 
the equal rights of men as I have, in part, stated them; ours began 
by affirming those rights. They said, some men are too ignorant 
and vicious to share in government. Possibly so, said we; and, by 
your system, you would always keep them ignorant and vicious. We 
proposed to give all a chance; and we expected the weak to grow 
stronger, the ignorant wiser, and all better and happier together. 

We made the experiment, and the fruit is before us. Look at it, 
think of it. Look at it in its aggregate grandeur, of extent of coun 
try, and numbers of population of ship, and steamboat, and 
railroad. . . . 

Thus we see that the plain, unmistakable spirit of that age toward 
slavery was hostility to the principles and toleration only by 

But now it is to be transformed into a "sacred right." Nebraska 
brings it forth, places it on the highroad to extension and perpetuity, 
and with a pat on its back says to it, "Go, and God speed you." 
Henceforth it is to be the chief jewel of the nation the very figure 
head of the ship of state. Little by little, but steadily as man s 
march to the grave, we have been giving up the old for the new faith. 
Nearly eighty years ago we began by declaring that all men are 
created equal; but now from that beginning we have run down to 
the other declaration, that for some men to enslave others is a 
"sacred right of self-government." These principles cannot stand 
together. They are as opposite as God and Mammon; and whoever 
holds to the one must despise the other. When Pettit, in connection 

Appendix 363 

with hia support of the Nebraska bill, called the Declaration of 
Independence "a self-evident lie," he only did what consistency and 
candor require all other Nebraska men to do. Of the forty-odd 
Nebraska senators who sat present and heard him, no one rebuked 
him. Nor am I apprised that any Nebraska newspaper, or any 
Nebraska orator, in the whole nation has ever rebuked him. If 
this had been said among Marion s men, Southerners though they 
were, what would have become of the man who said it? If this had 
been said to the men who captured Andre, the man who said it would 
probably have been hung sooner than Andre was. If it had been said 
in old Independence Hall seventy-eight years ago, the very door 
keeper would have throttled the man and thrust him into the street. 
Let no one be deceived. The spirit of seventy-six and the spirit of 
Nebraska are utter antagonisms; and the former is being rapidly 
displaced by the latter. 

Fellow-countrymen, Americans, South as well as North, shall we 
make no effort to arrest this? Already the liberal party throughout 
the world express the apprehension "that the one retrograde institu 
tion in America is undermining the principles of progress, and 
fatally violating the noblest political system the world ever saw." 
This is not the taunt of enemies, but the warning of friends. Is it 
quite safe to disregard it to despise it? Is there no danger to 
liberty itself in discarding the earliest practice and first precept of 
our ancient faith? In our greedy chase to make profit of the 
negro, let us beware lest we "cancel and tear in pieces" even the 
white man s charter of freedom. 

Our republican robe is soiled and trailed in the dust. Let ua 
repurify it. Let us turn and wash it white in the spirit, if not in 
the blood, of the Revolution. Let us turn slavery from its claims 
of "moral right" back upon its existing legal rights and its argu 
ments of "necessity." Let us return it to the position our fathers 
gave it, and there let it rest in peace. Let us readopt the Declara 
tion of Independence, and with it the practices and policy which 
harmonize with it. Let North and South, let all Americans let 
all lovers of liberty everywhere join in the great and good work. 
If we do this, we shall not only have saved the Union, but we shall 
have so saved it that the succeeding millions of free, happy people, 
the world over, shall rise up and call us blessed to the latest genera 

Abraham Lincoln, Early Speeches (N. Y., 1907), 216-264. 

Some of the thoughts of The Irrepressible Conflict of 
Freedom and Slavery were : 

This African slave system is one which, in its origin and in its 
growth, has been altogether foreign from the habits of the races 
which colonized these states and established civilization here. It was 
introduced on this continent as an engine of conquest, and for the 
establishment of monarchial power, by the Portuguese and the Span 
iards, and was rapidly extended by them all over South America, 
Central America, Louisiana, and Mexico. Its legitimate fruits are 

364 Appendix 

seen in the poverty, imbecility, and anarchy which now pervade all 
Portuguese and Spanish America. The free-labor system is of Ger 
man extraction, and it was established in our country by emigrants 
from Sweden, Holland, Germany, Great Britain, and Ireland. We 
justly ascribe to its influences the strength, wealth, greatness, in 
telligence, and freedom, which the whole American people now 
enjoy. One of the chief elements of the value of human life is 
freedom in the pursuit of happiness. The slave system is not only 
intolerable, unjust, and inhuman, toward the laborer, whom, only 
because he is a laborer, it loads down with chains and converts into 
merchandise, but is scarcely less severe upon the freeman, to whom, 
only because he is a laborer from necessity, it denies facilities for 
employment, and whom it expels from the community because it can 
not enslave and convert into merchandise also. It is necessarily im 
provident and ruinous, because, as a general truth, communities pros 
per and flourish, or droop and decline, in just the degree that they 
practice or neglect to practice the primary duties of justice and 
humanity. The free-labor system conforms to the divine law of 
equality, which is written in the hearts and consciences of men, and 
therefore is always and everywhere beneficent. 

The slave system is one of constant danger, distrust, suspicion, 
and watchfulness. It debases those whose toil alone can produce 
wealth and resources for defense, to the lowest degree of which 
human nature is capable, to guard against mutiny and insurrection, 
and thus wastes energies which otherwise might be employed in 
national development and aggrandizement. 

The free-labor system educates all alike, and by opening all the 
fields of industrial employment and all the departments of authority, 
to the unchecked and equal rivalry of all classes of men, at once 
secures universal contentment, and brings into the highest possible ac 
tivity all the physical, moral, and social energies of the whole state. 
In states where the slave system prevails, the masters, directly or 
indirectly, secure all the political power, and constitute a ruling 
aristocracy. In states where the free-labor system prevails, universal 
suffrage necessarily obtains, and the state inevitably becomes, sooner 
or later, a republic or democracy. . . . 

Hitherto the two systems have existed in different states, but 
side by side within the American Union. This has happened be 
cause the Union is a confederation of states. But in another aspect 
the United States constitute only one nation. Increase of popula 
tion, which is filling the states out to their very borders, together 
with a new and extended network of railroads and other avenues, 
and an internal commerce which daily becomes more intimate, is 
rapidly bringing the states into a higher and more perfect social unity 
or consolidation. Thus, these antagonistic systems are continually 
coming into closer contact, and collision results. 

Shall I tell you what this collision means? They who think that 
it is accidental, unnecessary, the work of interested or fanatical 
agitators, and therefore ephemeral, mistake the case altogether. 
It is an irrepressible conflict between opposing and enduring forces, 
and it means that the United States must and will, sooner or later, 
become either entirely a slave-holding nation or entirely a free-labor 

Appendix 365 

nation. Either the cotton or rice fields of South Carolina and the 
sugar plantations of Louisiana will ultimately be tilled by free labor, 
and Charleston and New Orleans, become marts of legitimate mer 
chandise alone, or else the rye-fields and wheat-fields of Massa 
chusetts and New York must again be surrendered by their farmers 
to slave culture and to the production of slaves, and Boston and 
New York become once more markets for trade in the bodies and 
eouls of men. It is the failure to apprehend this great truth that 
induces so many unsuccessful attempts at final compromises between 
the slave and free states, and it is the existence of this great fact 
that renders all such pretended compromises, when made, vain and 
ephemeral. . . . 

At last, the Republican party has appeared. It avows, now, aa 
the Republican party of 1800 did, in one word, its faith and its 
works, Equal and exact justice to all men. Even when it first 
entered the field, only half organized, it struck a blow which only 
just failed to secure complete and triumphant victory. In this, 
its second campaign, it has already won advantages which render 
that triumph now both easy and certain. 

The secret of its assured success lies within that very character 
istic which, in the mouth of scoffers, constitutes its great and lasting 
imbecility and reproach. It lies in the fact that it is a party of one 
idea; but that is a noble one an idea that fills and expands all 
generous souls; the idea of equality the equality of all men before 
human tribunals and human laws, as they all are equal before the 
Divine tribunal and Divine laws. 

I know, and you know, that a revolution has begun. I know, 
and all the world knows, that revolutions never go backward. 
Twenty Senators and a hundred Representatives proclaim boldly in 
Congress to-day sentiments and opinions and principles of freedom 
which hardly so many men, even in this free state, dared to utter in 
their own homes twenty years ago. While the Government of the 
United States under the conduct of the Democratic party, has been 
all that time surrendering one plain and castle after another to 
slavery, the people of the United States have been no less steadily 
and perseveringly gathering together the forces with which to recover 
back again all the fields and all the castles which have been lost, 
and to confound and overthrow, by one decisive blow, the betrayers 
of the Constitution and freedom forever. 

William H. Seward, The Irrepressible Conflict: A Speech Deliv 
ered at Rochester, Oct. 25, 1858 (no title page, New York, 1858), 
1-7 passim. 

This review of the struggle by Senator Benjamin F. 
Wade, an Ohio antislavery senator who frequently assailed 
slavery, shows how the sentiment in the South had drifted 
toward secession : 

There is no principle held to-day by this great Republican party 
that has not had the sanction of your Government in every depart- 

366 Appendix 

ment for more than seventy years. You have changed your opinions. 
We stand where we used to stand. That is the only difference. . . . 
Sir, we stand where Washington stood, where Jefferson stood, where 
Madison stood, where Monroe stood. We stand where Adams and 
Jackson and even Polk stood. That revered statesman, Henry Clay, 
of blessed memory with his dying breath asserted the doctrine that 
we hold to-day. . . . As to compromises, I had supposed that we 
were all agreed that the day of compromises was at an end. The 
most solemn compromises we have ever made have been violated 
without a whereas. Since I have had a seat in this body, one of 
considerable antiquity, that had stood for more than thirty years, 
was swept away from your statute books. . . . We nominated our 
candidates for President and Vice-President, and you did the same 
for yourselves. The issue was made up and we went to the people 
upon it. . . And we beat you upon the plainest and most palpable 
issue that ever was presented to the American people, and one that 
they understood the best. There is no mistaking it; and now when 
we come to the capitol, I tell you that our President and our Vice- 
President must be inaugurated and administer the government as all 
their predecessors have done. Sir, it would be humiliating and dis 
honorable to us if we were to listen to a compromise (only) by 
which he who has the verdict of the people in his pocket should make 
his way to the Presidential chair. When it comes to that you have 
no government. ... If a State secedes, although we will not make 
war upon her, we cannot recognize her right to be out of the Union, 
and she is not out until she gains the consent of the Union itself; 
and the chief magistrate of the nation, be he who he may, will 
find under the Constitution of the United States that it is his sworn 
duty to execute the law in every part and parcel of this Govern 
ment; that he cannot be released from that obligation. . . . There 
fore, it will be incumbent on the chief magistrate to proceed to 
collect the revenue of ships entering their ports precisely in the 
same way and to the same extent that he does now in every other 
State of the Union. . . . What must she do? If she is contented 
to live in this equivocal state, all would be well perhaps, but she 
could not live there. No people in the world could live in that 
condition. What will they do? They must take the initiative and 
declare war upon the United States; and the moment that they levy 
war, force must be met by force; and they must, therefore, hew out 
their independence by violence and war. There is no other way 
under the Constitution, that I know of whereby a chief magistrate 
of any politics could be released from this duty: If this State, 
though seceding, should declare war against the United States, I 
do not suppose there is a lawyer in this body but what would say 
that the act of levying war is treason against the United States. 
That is where it results. We might just as well look the matter 
right in the face. . . . 

I say, sir, I stand by the Union of these States. Washington and 
his compatriots fought for that good, old flag. It shall never be 
hauled down, but shall be the glory of the Government to which I 
belong, as long as my life shall continue. ... It was my protector in 

Appendix 367 

infancy, and the pride and glory of my riper years; and although 
it may be assailed by traitors on every side, by the grace of God, 
under its shadow I will die. 

Nicolay and Hay, Abraham Lincoln: A History (New York, 1890), 
Ch. II, pp. 412-414. 

These last words of John Brown show exactly how radical 
the antislavery movement had become : 

I have, may it please the Court, a few words to say. 

In the first place, I deny everything but what I have all along 
admitted the design on my part to free the slaves. I intended 
certainly to have made a clear thing of that matter, as I did last 
winter, when I went into Missouri, and there took slaves without 
the snapping of a gun on either side, moved them through the 
country, and finally left them in Canada. I designed to have done 
the same thing again, on a larger scale. That was all I intended. 
I never did intend murder, or treason, or the destruction of property, 
or to excite or incite slaves to rebellion, or to make insurrection. 

I have another objection: and that is, it is unjust that I should 
Buffer such a penalty. Had I interfered in the manner which I 
admit, and which I admit has been fairly proved, for (I admire the 
truthfulness and candor of the greater portion of the witnesses who 
have testified in this case) had I so interfered in behalf of the 
rich, the powerful, the intelligent, the so-called great, or in behalf 
of any of their friends, either father, mother, sister, brother, or wife, 
or children, or any of that class, and suffered and sacrificed what I 
have in this interference, it would have been all right, and every 
man in this Court would have deemed it an act worthy of reward 
rather than punishment. 

This Court acknowledges, as I suppose, the validity of the Law of 
God. I see a book kissed here which I suppose to be the Bible, or at 
least, the New Testament. That teaches) me that all things what 
soever I would that men should do unto me I should do even so to 
them. It teaches me further, to "remember them that are in bonds 
as bound with them." I endeavored to act up to that instruction. 
I say, I am yet too young to understand that God is any respecter 
of persons. I believe that to have interfered as I have done, in behalf 
of His despised poor, was not wrong, but right. Now, if it is 
deemed necessary that I should forfeit my life for the furtherance 
of the ends of justice, and mingle my blood further with the blood 
of my children, and with the blood of millions in this slave country 
whose rights are disregarded by wicked, cruel, and unjust enact 
ments I submit; so let it be done. 

Let me say one word further: 

I feel entirely satisfied with the treatment I have received on my 
trial. Considering the circumstances, it has been more generous than 
I expected. But I feel no consciousness of guilt. I have stated from 
the first what was my intention and what was not. I never had 
any design against the life of any person, nor any disposition to com- 

368 Appendix 

mit treason, or excite slaves to rebel, or make any general insur 
rection. I never encouraged any man to do so, but always dis 
couraged any idea of that kind. 

Let me say, also, a word in regard to the statements made by 
some of those connected with me. I hear it has been stated by some 
of them that I have induced them to join me. But the contrary is 
true. I do not say this to injure them, but as regretting their weak 
ness. There is not one of them but joined me of his own accord, and 
the greater part at their own expense. A number of them I never 
saw, and never had a word or conversation with, till the day they 
came to me, and that was for the purpose I have stated. 

Now I have done. 

James Redpath, The Public Life of Capt. John Brown (Boston, 
1860), pp. 340-342. 

The Act to Establish a Bureau for the Belief of Freed- 
men and Refugees was : 

Be it enacted . . . That there is hereby established in the War 
Department, to continue during the present war of rebellion, and 
for one year thereafter, a bureau of refugees, freedmen, and abandoned 
lands, to which shall be committed, as hereinafter provided, the 
supervision and management of all abandoned lands, and the control 
of all subjects relating to refugees and freedmen from rebel states, or 
from any district of country within the territory embraced in the 
operations of the army, under such rules and regulations as may be 
prescribed by the head of the bureau and approved by the President. 
The said bureau shall be under the management and control of a 
commissioner to be appointed by the President, by and with the 
advice and consent of the Senate, . . . And the commissioner and 
all persons appointed under this act, shall, before entering upon 
their duties, take oath of office prescribed in ... (the act of July 
2, 1862). . . . 

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the Secretary of War 
may direct such issues of provisions, clothing, and fuel, as he may 
deem needful for the immediate and temporary shelter and supply 
of destitute and suffering refugees and freedmen and their wives 
and children, under such rules and regulations as he may direct. 

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That the President may, by and 
with the advice and consent of the Senate, appoint an assistant com 
missioner for each of the states declared to be in insurrection, not 
exceeding ten in number, who shall, under the direction of the com 
missioner, aid in the execution of the provisions of this act. . . . 
And any military officer may be detailed and assigned to duty under 
this act without increase of pay or allowances. The commission 
shall, before the commencement of each regular session of Congress, 
make full report of his proceedings with exhibits of the state of hia 
accounts to the President, who shall communicate the same to 
Congress, and shall also make special reports whenever required to do 
so by the President or either house of congress; and the assistant 

Appendix 369 

commissioners shall make quarterly reports of their proceedings to 
the commissioner, and also such other special reports as from time 
to time may be required. 

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That the commissioner, under 
the direction of the President, shall have authority to set apart, 
for the use of loyal refugees and freedmen, such tracts of land within 
the insurrectionary states as shall have been abandoned, or to which 
the United States shall have been abandoned, or to which the United 
States shall have acquired title by confiscation or sale, or otherwise, 
and to every male citizen, whether refugee or freedman, as aforesaid, 
there shall be assigned not more than forty acres of such land, and 
the person to whom it was so assigned shall be protected in the use 
and enjoyment of the land for the term of three years at an annual 
rent not exceeding six per centum upon the value of such land, as it 
was appraised by the state authorities in the year eighteen hundred 
and sixty, for the purpose of taxation, and in case no such appraisal 
can be found, then the rental shall be based upon the estimated 
value of the land in said year, to be ascertained in such manner as 
the commissioner may by regulation prescribe. At the end of said 
term, or at any time during said term, the occupants of any parcels 
BO assigned may purchase the land and receive such title thereto 
as the United States can convey, upon paying therefor the value of 
the land, as ascertained and fixed for the purpose of determining 
the annual rent aforesaid. 

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That all acts and parts of acts 
inconsistent with the provisions of this act, are hereby repealed. 

Approved, March 3, 1865. 

Text in U. 8. Statutes at Large, XIII, 507-509. For the pro 
ceedings see the House and Senate Journals, 38th Congress, 1st and 
2d Sess., and the Cong. Globe. On the work of the bureau see Senate 
Exec. Doc. 28, 38th Cong., 2d Sess.; House Exec. Docs. 11, 70, and 
120, 39th Cong., 1st Sess.; House Exec. Doc. 7, 39th Cong., 2d Sess.; 
House Report 30, 40th Cong., 2d Sess.; House Exec. Doc. 329, ibid.; 
House Exec. Doc. 142, 41st Cong., 2d Sess.; House Misc. Doc. 87, 42d 
Cong., 3d Sess.; House Exec. Doc. 100, 43d Cong., 1st Sess.; House 
Exec. Doc. 144, 44th Cong., 1st Sess. On the condition of Freedmen 
see Senate Exec. Doc. 53, and Senate Report 25, 38th Cong., 1st Sess.; 
House Exec. Doc. 118, 39th Cong., 1st Sess. Southern State legis 
lation respecting freedmen is summarized in McPherson, Recon~ 
struction, 29-44. See also Cox, Three Decades, chap. 25. 

It may be interesting to note Abraham Lincoln s pro 
phetic protest against lynch law uttered in 1830. He said : 

In the great journal of things happening under the sun, we, the 
American people, find our account running under date of the nine 
teenth century of the Christian era. We find ourselves in the peace 
ful possession of the fairest portion of the earth as regards extent 
of territory, fertility of soil, and salubrity of climate. We find 

370 Appendix 

ourselves under the government of a system of political institutions 
conducing more essentially to the ends of civil and religious liberty, 
than any of which the history of former times tells us. We, when 
mounting the stage of existence, found ourselves the legal inheritors 
of these fundamental blessings. We toiled not in the acquirement or 
establishment of them; they are a legacy bequeathed us by a once 
hardy, brave, and patriotic, but now lamented and departed, race of 
ancestors. . . . 

At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I 
answer, if it ever reach us it must spring up amongst us; it cannot 
come from abroad. If destruction be our lot we must ourselves be 
its author. We must live through all time or die by suicide. 

I hope I am over wary; but if I am not, there is even now some 
thing of ill omen amongst us. I mean the increasing disregard for 
law which pervades the country the growing disposition to substi 
tute the wild and furious passions in lieu of the sober judgment of 
courts, and the worse than savage mobs for the executive ministers 
of justice. This disposition is awfully fearful in any community; and 
that it now exists in ours, though grating to our feelings to admit, 
it would be a violation of truth and an insult to our intelligence to 
deny. . . . 

Turn then to that horror-striking scene at St. Louis. A single 
victim only was sacrificed there. This story is very short, and ia 
perhaps the most highly tragic of anything of its length that haa 
ever been witnessed in real life. A mulatto man by the name of 
Mclntosh was seized in the street, dragged to the suburbs of the 
city, chained to a tree, and actually burned to death; and all within 
a single hour from the time he had been a freeman attending to hia 
own business and at peace with the world. 

Such are the effects of mob law, and such are the scenes becoming 
more and more frequent in this land so lately famed for love of law 
and order, and the stories of which have even now grown too familiar 
to attract anything more than an idle remark. 

But you are perhaps ready to ask, "What has this to do with the 
perpetuation of our political institutions?" I answer, "It has much 
to do with it." Its direct consequences are, comparatively speaking, 
but a small evil, and much of its danger consists in the pronenesa 
of our minds to regard its direct as its only consequences. . . . But 
the example in either case was fearful. When men take it in their 
heads today to hang gamblers or burn murderers, they should 
recollect that in the confusion usually attending such transactions 
they will be as likely to hang or burn some one who is neither a 
gambler nor a murderer as one who is, and that, acting upon the 
example they set, the mob of tomorrow may, and probably will, hang 
or burn some of them by the very same mistake. And not only so; 
the innocent, those who have ever set their faces against violations 
of law in every shape, alike with the guilty fall victims to the 
ravages of mob law; and thus it goes on, step by step, till all the 
wlls erected for the defense of the persons and property of indi 
viduals are trodden down and disregarded. But all this, even, is not 
the full extent of the evil. By such examples, by instances of the 
perpetrators of such acts going unpunished, the lawless in spirit are 

Appendix 371 

encouraged to become lawless in practice ; and having been used to no 
restraint but dread of punishment, they thus become absolutely 
unrestrained. . . . Tims, then, by the operation of this mobocrat spirit 
which all must admit is now abroad in the land, the strongest bul 
wark of any government, and particularly of those constituted like 
ours, may effectually be broken down and destroyed I mean the 
attachment of the people. Whenever this effect shall be produced 
among us; whenever the vicious portion of (our) population shall 
be permitted to gather in bands of hundreds and thousands, and burn 
churches, ravage and rob provision stores, throw printing presses into 
rivers, shoot editors, and hang and burn obnoxious persons at pleasure 
and with impunity, depend upon it, this government cannot last. 
By such things the feelings of the best citizens will become more or 
less alienated from it, and under such circumstances, men of sufficient 
talent and ambition will not be wanting to seize the opportunity, 
strike the blow, and overturn that fair fabric which for the last 
half century has been the fondest hope of the lovers of freedom 
throughout the world. . . . 

The question recurs, "How shall we fortify against it?" The 
answer is simple. Let every American, every lover of liberty, every 
well-wisher to his posterity swear by the blood of the Revolution 
never to violate in the least particular the laws of the country, 
and never to tolerate their violation by others. As the patriots of 
seventy-six did to the support of the Declaration of Independence, 
BO to the support of the Constitution and laws let every American 
pledge his life, his property, and his sacred honor let every man 
remember that to violate the law is to trample on the blood of his 
father, and to tear the charter of his own and his children s liberty. 
Let reverence for the laws be breathed by every American mother to 
the lisping babe that prattles on her lap ; let it be taught in schools, 
in seminaries, and in colleges; let it be written in primers, spelling- 
books, and in almanacs; let it be preached from the pulpit, pro 
claimed in legislative halls, and enforced in courts of justice. And, 
in short, let it become the political religion of the nation; and let 
the old and the young, the rich and the poor, the grave and the gay 
of all sexes and tongues and colors and conditions, sacrifice un 
ceasingly upon its altars. While ever a state of feeling such as this 
ehall universally or even very generally prevail throughout the 
nation, vain will be every effort, and fruitless every attempt, to 
subvert our national freedom. . . 
A, Lincoln, Early Speeches (N. Y., 1907), 14-21 passim. 


Abbott, A. R., a Negro surgeon, 

Abdy s observation of interbreed 
ing, 111 

Abolition, 169-181 ; in the South, 
182-183; quelled in the South, 
187; rise of, in the West, 182- 

Abolitionists, achievements of, 

Achievements, of Negroes un 
usual, 291-292 

Achievements of Negroes in free 
dom, 280-301 

Adams, Henry, a leader of Negro 
migrants, 263-264 

Adams, John, fear of, 57 

Adams, John Quincy, the cham 
pion of free* speech, 195-198; 
not an antislavery man, 196; 
comment of, on the Missouri 
Compromise, 343-344; on slav 
ery, 353-354 

Africa, the Negro in, 1-14; fea 
tures of, 2; civilizations of, 
2-3 ; slavery in, 3-4 ; peoples of, 
5-6; empires in, 6, 7, 8-12; Ne 
gro colonists in, 269 

African colonization in the Niger 
Valley, 167-168 

Alabama, peonage in, 270 

Albert, A. B., an inventor, 294 

Aldridge, Ira, an actor, 148 

Alexandria, fugitive slaves in, 

Alien and Sedition Laws, the 
bearing of, on secession, 219 

Allen, Richard, founder of the 
A. M. E. Church, 77-78 

Alton, Illinois, the murder of 
Lovejoy at, 215 


American Antislavery Society, the 
constitution of the, 350-351 

American Federation of Labor, 
the, and the Negro, 334-337 

Anthony, Susan B., an abolition 
ist, 176 

Anti-abolition riots, 191 

Antislavery cause during the 
American Revolution, 66; in 
the South, the decline of, 86-98 

Antislavery movement restricted 
to the North, 187 

Antislavery argument, 52-53 

Angolas, the, 25 

Appeal, the, of a Southern Ma 
tron, 351-352 

Appleton, Nathaniel, an advocate 
of the rights of man, 55-56 

Apprenticeship enforced, 244 

Arkansas, the reconstruction of, 

Arming Negroes, the, advised, 

Artisans, Negro, 115 

Ashanti, the state of, 10 

Association for the Study of Ne 
gro Life and History, the, 341- 

Attacks on slavery through the 
mails, 202 

Attacks on slavery milder, 87 

Attucks, Crispus, a martyr for 
freedom, 58 

Augusta, A. T., a Negro surgeon, 

A Vache colony, the, 227-228 

Bacon, Thomas, interest of, in the 
instruction of Negroes, 39 

Baker, Henry E., opinion of, as 
to the Negro invention of the 
cotton gin, 109 



Baldwin, William H., a philan 
thropist, 288-289 
Ball, Thdmas, a Negro contractor 

in Ohio, 139 
Ballou, General, a commander of 

Negro troops, 318 
Baltimore, Lord, the owner of 

Irish Nell, 47 
Baltimore, colonization in, 162, 

Bancroft s opinion as to the valor 

of Negro soldiers quoted, 65 
Banks, General, opinion of, as to 

Negro troops, 235 
Banks controlled by Negroes, 292 
Banneker, Benjamin, the mathe 
matician and astronomer, 68, 

Bannister, E. M., a painter, 148, 


Bantu, the, 4, 15 
Baptists, the Emancipating, 56 
Barrow, David, an antislavery 

man in Kentucky, 90 
Bassett, E. D., a reconstruction 

officeholder, 252; the education 

of, 252 
Beard, Andrew J., an inventor, 

Beers, Captain, the killing of, by 

slaves, 36-37 

Bell, Phillip A., an editor, 148 
Benezet, Anthony, a friend of the 

Negro and promoter of Negro 

colonization, 56, 154, 155, 165 
Bentley, George, a Negro preack- 

er, 117 

Benton, J. W., an inventor, 296 
Berea College, antislavery, 182 
Beriah Green, a teacher of Negro 

youth at Oneida Institute, 149 
Bias, J. G., an advocate of colo 
nization, 166 

Biased investigators, 339-341 
Binding a State, 119-120 
Bibb, Henry, a colonizer, 166 
Birney, James G., an abolition 
editor, 182; press of, destroyed, 

184, 192; the employment of 

Matilda by, 206 
Black, Jeremiah, opinion of, on 

granting slaves patents, 111 
Black Corsair, the, 28 

Blair, Henry, an inventor, 109 

Blazing the way on free soil, 138- 

Blease, Cole, a leader of the poor 
whites, 330 

Bold slander, a, 323-325 

Booker T. Washington idea, the, 

Boston, the rising of slaves in, 
36; colonization in, 161 

Bowditch, William J., an aboli 
tionist, 174 

Bowman, Henry A., an inventor, 

Boyd, Henry, a successful manu 
facturer, 139 

Braithwaite, W. S., a literary 
critic, 304 

Bradley, Senator, effort of, to 
stop the slave trade, 81 

Brannagan, Thomas, the interest 
of, in colonization, 155, 165 

Brazil, the Negro Numantia in, 

Bremer, Fredrika, an abolition 
writer, 185 

British, the arming of Negroes 
by, 60-62 

British American Manual Labor 
Institute, the establishment of, 

British Guiana, sought as a place 
for colonization, 165 

Brown, George D., a social work 
er among Negroes, 286 

Brown, John, the martyrdom of, 
220; the last words of, 367-368 

Brown, William Wells, a Negro 
historian, 146-147; an anti- 
slavery lecturer, 179 

Bruce, B. K., United States Sen 
ator, 249; education of, 251 
Bryan, Andrew, a pioneer preach 
er, 39, 67-68; organizer of an 
independent Baptist Church, 77 

Buchanan, James, a weak presi 
dent, 217-218 

Bureau for the Relief of Freed- 

men, the, 368-369 
Burke, the imprisonment of, 188 

Burleigh, Charles C., an aboli 
tionist, 176 
Burleigh, Harry, a musician, 298 



Burnaby, Andrew, comment of, 
on slavery, 35 

Burns, Anthony, the return of, 

Burr, the imprisonment of, 188 

Business, the progress of Negroes 
in, 291 

Business League, 292 

Butler, General B. F., the contra 
bands of, 223-224 

Cain, Richard H., a member of 
Congress, 249 ; education of, 

Calabar, Eboes, from, 25 
Caldwell, Elisha B., a promoter 

of colonization, 157, 158 
Calhoun, John C., the defense of 
slavery by, 197, 199-200; effort 
of, to have mails searched, 205, 

California, a free State, 213-214 
Canada, progress of Negroes in, 

Camden, Negro insurrection at, 

Campbell, Jabez, a churchman, 

Canaan Academy, the breakup of, 


Canada, colonization in, 167-168 
Canterbury, Ct., the Prudence 

Crandall affair in, 175 
Capability of Negro officeholders, 


Capers, Bishop, interest of, in 
the religious instruction of Ne 
groes, 97 

Carnegie, Andrew, a philanthro 
pist, 289 

Cardozo, F. L., a reconstruction 
officeholder, 252 ; the education 
of, 252; honorable record of, 

Gary, Lott, a colonizationist, 158 
Cassey, James, opposition of, to 

colonization, 162 
Cassey, Joseph C., a successful 

Negro, 135-136 
Cassor, John, a Negro owning 

slaves, 127 

Catto, E. V. C., a social worker, 

Chamberlain, quotation from, 6 
Channing, W. E., an abolitionist, 
185; opinion of, on miscegena 
tion, 187 ; interpretation of the 
constitution by, 194 
Chapman, Professor Charles E., 

quoted, 31 

Chapman, Maria Weston, an abo 
litionist, 174 

Charleston, South Carolina, ref 
ugees in, 72-73 ; the free Ne 
groes of, 126-127; the prosper 
ity of, 129 

Chase, S. P., construction of the 
constitution by, 194; counsel 
in the Van Za ndt case, 206 
Chastellux, Marquis de, opinion 
of, as to the valor of Negro 
soldiers, 63-64 
Gheatham, H. P?, a member of 

Congress, 249 
Chester, T. Morris, honorable 

record of, 253 

Chicago, race riot in, 328; segre 
gation tendencies in, 333 
Child, Lydia Maria, an abolition 
ist, 174 
Choise, Garret, escape of, with a 

Negro woman, 46 
Christian slavery, 18 
Christiana tragedy, the, 141 
Churches, Negro, broken up by 
the Fugitive Slave Law, 141; 
the progress of, 284-285 
Cincinnati, the free Negroes in, 
138-139, 140; riots in, 98, 140 
Cinque, Joseph, the leader of the 

rising on L Amistad, 209 
Citizenship of Negroes, 120-121 
Civilization of Africa, 2-3 
Clark, Edward V., a successful 

business man, 136 
Glarkson, Thomas, a discourse 

on, 149 

Clay, Cassius M., an antislavery 
editor, 182; expulsion of, from 
Kentucky, 186 

Clay, Henry, interest of, in colo 
nization, 157 ; the evasive po 
sition of, 198-199; the compro 
miser, 213 

Clergy, the attitude of, toward 
the blacks, 39 



Coast, Gold, the Dutch traders 

on, the, 21 

Codman, John, slaves of, put 
to death because of insurrec 
tion, 37 

Coffin, Levi, the promoter of the 
Underground Railroad, 143 

Collins, Henry M., a successful 
business man, 136; an advo 
cate of colonization, 166 

Colonization, African, 153-168; 
impetus to, 154; the difficul 
ties of, 160; protest of free Ne 
groes against, 161-162; sup 
port of, from Negroes, 162- 
163; the failure of, 163-164; 
other schemes of, 164-168; in 
Canada, proposed, 165-166; in 
Texas, proposed, 164; in Brit 
ish Guiana, 164; in Santo Do 
mingo, 164; in the West In 
dies, 164-165 ; in Trinidad, 164 ; 
revival of by Lincoln, 227 ; re 
vival of, by Turner and Mor 
gan, 268 

Colonizat/ionists not interested in 
Africa, 166-167 

Columbia, the Negroes at, dis 
tributed, 141 

Columbus, segregation tendencies 
in, 333 

Comet, The, freedom of slaves of, 

Compensated emancipation pro 
posed, 221 

Complaint, a just, 338 

Compromise of 1850, the, 213-214 

Compromises on slavery by the 
Convention of 1787, 74 

Conflict of classes in cities, 332- 

Conflict of races in cities, 333- 

Confiscation of property, an act 
for, 228-230 

Congo, the, 2 

Congoes, the, 25 

Congress, the action of, on the 
memorial from the Quakers and 
from the Pennsylvania Aboli 
tion Society, 75-77; report of, 
adopted, 75-77 ; lack of interest 
in the Negro, 76-77 

Congress of the Confederation, 
silence of, on slavery, 73 

Congressional reconstruction, 246- 

Conservatism of the Negro, 331 

Constitution of the American An- 
tislavery Society, the, 350-351 

Constitutional questions, 236-238 

Contrabands, 223-224 

Control of white men in recon 
structed States, 253 

Convention of 1787, the attitude 
of, toward slavery, 73-74 

Convicts as teachers of Negroes 
and whites, 40-41 

Cook, John F., a minister and 
teacher, 148 

Cook, Will Marion, a musician, 

Corbin, J. C., honorable record of, 

Cornish, Samuel E., an editor, 

Coromantees, 24 

Corruption explained, 254-255 

Cotter, Joseph Seaman, a writer, 

Cotton, the increase in the pro 
duction of, 70, 83 

Cotton gin, the, invention of, 79; 
the effect of, 80 

Craft, William, the escape of, 141 

Craft, Ellen, a fugitive, 141 

Crandall, Prudence, the imprison 
ment of, 97-98, 175 

Crandall, Reuben, imprisonment 
of, 186 

Craney Island, fugitives in, 226 

Credit system for the freedmen, 

Creighton, a Negro slaveholder, 

Creole Case, the, 210-212 

Crime, the decrease in, 284 

Crisis of 1850, the, 213 

Crisis, The, 277-278 

Criticism of Negroes in the army, 

Crittenden, Gov. John, pardon of 
C. Fairbank by, 188 

Croft, C., slaves of, burned alive, 



Cromwell, Isaac, escape of, with 

a white woman^ 46 
Cromwell, J. W., an historian, 

Crothers, Samuel, an antislavery 

leader in the Western Reserve, 


Crummell, Alexander, a church 
man, 148-149 
Cuffe, Paul, the interest of, in 

colonization, 156, 157 
Culture of Negroes, 1-14 
Curry, J. L. M., efforts of, for 

Negro education, 287 

Dabney, Austin, a soldier of dis 
tinction during the American 
Revolution, 65-66 ; the pension 
of, 66; standing of, 66 

Dahomey, the State of, 10 

Daniel, the fugitive, arrested, 141 

Dred Scott decision, 142 

Davidson, S. J., an inventor, 294 

Davis, Hugh, a white man charged 
with lying with a Negro woman, 

Davis, Joseph, attitude of, to 
ward his slaves, 106 

Declaration of Independence, the, 
and the Negro, 56-57 

Decline of the Seaboard Slave 
States, 102 

De Grasse, John V., a Negro sur 
geon, 234 

Delaney, Martin R., a coloniza- 
tionist, 166, 167, 168; an offi 
cer, 234 

DeLarge, R. C., a member of Con 
gress, 249-250 

De Mello, Caetano, expedition of, 
sent against Palmares, 32 

Des Moines, the training camp 
for Negro officers at, 317-318 

De Niza, Fray Marcos, Estevane- 
cito with, 27 

Desalines, child of the rebellion 
in Haiti, 72 

Dett, Nathaniel, a musician, 298 

Diaguillo, the Black Corsair, 28 

Dickinson, J. H., an inventor, 294 

Dickinson, S. L., an inventor, 294 

Dillard, J. H., efforts of, for Ne 
gro education, 287-288 

Discrimination against Negroes 
in the army, 315-323 

District of Columbia, emancipa 
tion in, urged, 213; slave trade 
in, abolished, 214 

Dix, General, attitude of, toward 
Negro fugitives, 224 

Donate, Martin, a Negro slave 
holder, 129 

Douglas, Stephen A., popular sov 
ereignty of, 214 

Douglass, Frederick, an opponent 
of colonization, 160-167, 168; 
an antislavery lecturer, 179- 
181 ; an officeholder, 254 

Douglass, H. F., a Negro officer, 

Douglass, William, a churchman, 

Douglass, William, an inventor, 

Dowd, Jerome, interest of, in the 
study of the Negro, 342 

Downing, Thomas, a successful 
Negro, 136 

Doyle, James, an inventor, 295- 

DuBois, W. E. B., an educator 
and leader, 267 ; opposition of, 
to Booker T. Washington, 276- 
277 ; a controversial writer, 301 

Dubuclet, the excellent record of, 

Dulin, John, intelligent slave of, 

Dunbar, Paul Laurence, a poet, 
301 ; works of, 301-303 

Duprey, Louis, an antislavery 
man, 89 

Dutch West India Company, 21 

Drake, Sir Francis, the plunder 
ing of, 21 

Drayton, D., the imprisonment of, 

Dred Scott case, the 216, 217 

Dresser, Amos, the punishment 
of, 186 

Early, of Georgia, the effort of, 
in favor of the slave trade, 81- 

Eboes, 24, 25 

Economic condition of the freed- 



men, 261-263; remedies for, 
proposed, 263 

Economic problem of the Negro 
after the migration, 334 

Economic slavery after the reac 
tion, 85, 99-123 

Education of Negroes in the Eigh 
teenth Century, 40-42, 43, 44; 
prohibition of, in the South, 
96; of slaves, 108-109; trial of, 
in solving the Negro problem, 

Educational advantages of Ne 
gro reconstruction officeholders, 

Efforts for economic betterment 
made by Negroes themselves, 

Egypt and the North, 6, 7, 8, 11 

Ellicott, George, the friend of 
Benjamin Banneker, 69-70 

Elliott, Robert B., a member of 
Congress, 251 ; education of, 

Ellis, William, a Negro surgeon, 

Ellsworth, Oliver, attitude of, to 
ward slavery, 73 

Emancipation by enlistment dur 
ing the Revolutionary War, 62- 
63 ; by statute, 66-67 ; the check 
of, 71; proclamation of , by Fre 
mont during the Civil War, 
228 ; the same by Hunter, 229 ; 
by Lincoln, 230-231, 237-238 

Emancipation Proclamation, the, 
the issuance of, 230-231; the 
constitutional aspect of, 237- 

Emlen Institute, 139 

Encomium, The, freedom of slaves 
of, 208 

Enfranchisement of Negroes, the 
question of, 256 

England, slavery in, 38 

Enlightenment of slaves, 108-109 

Enterprise, The, the freedom of 
the slaves of, 208 

Environment, the effect of, 4-5 

Equality before the law advo 
cated by Sumner, 356-358 

Estevanecito, explorations of, 27- 

Ethiopia, the rise, of, 6, 7, 8 
Europe, African slaves in, 18, 19 
Evans, Henry, a preacher, 117 
Exceptional slaves, 38-39 
Explorers, Negroes with, 27-28 
Exodus of 1879, the, 263-266 

Fairbank, Calvin, the imprison 
ment of, 188 

Fauset, Jessie R., a writer, 303 
Featherstonaugh, comment of, on 

the internal slave trade, 99-100 
Fee, John G,, an abolitionist, the 

founder of Berea College, 182 
Ferdinand, King, and the slave 

trade, 19 
Fessenden, W. P., reconstruction 

ideas of, 242 

Fighter, the Negro as, a, 325 
Finding a way of escape, 260-280 
Fifteenth Amendment, 238 
Finley, Robert, a promoter of 

colonization, 157 
First Regiment Infantry Corps 

d Afrique, 232 
First Regiment of Louisiana 

Heavy Artillery, 232 
First Regiment of Louisiana Na 
tive Guards, 232 
Florida, peonage in, 270 
Follen, Eliza Lee, an abolition 

poet, 174 
Force bills, the enactment of, 

Force, the use of, to check the 

exodus of Negroes, 265 
Forten, James, an inventor, 109; 

a successful business man, 136; 

opposition of, to colonization, 

Fortress Monroe, fugitive slaves 

at, 226 
Foss, Andrew T., an abolitionist, 

Foster, Abby Kelly, an antislav- 

ery lecturer, 175-176 
Foster, Stephen, an abolitionist, 


Fothergill, interest of, in coloni 
zation, 154-155 

Fourteenth Amendment, 238, 244 
Francis, Henry, a teacher and 

minister, 68-69 



Franklin, Benjamin, interest of, 
in emancipation, 74-75 

Fraternal organizations, 292 

Fray, Marcos de Niza, Estevane- 
cito with, 27 

Free Negroes, 124-137; expulsion 
of, from the South, 95-06; re 
strictions on, 95-96 ; the status 
of, 126-127; the progress of, 
127; owners of slaves, 127-128; 
the wealth of, 128-129; rela 
tions with slaves, 133-134; a 
disturbing factor, 134-135; the 
progress of, 135; opposition of, 
to colonization, 160-163 

Freedmen among the Latins, 26- 
27; in Guatemala, 28; mal 
treatment of, in the South, 244 

Freedmen s Bureau, the, 245-246, 

Freedom and the Negro during 
the American Revolution, 58 

Fremont, John.C., the emancipa 
tory order of, 228 

French generals, the praise of, 
for Negro soldiers, 321-322 

French traders of the Senegal, 21 

Fugitive, the, 112-113, 114, 142- 
143 ; reactionary measures deal 
ing with, 202; in the army 
camps, 223-227; Lincoln s pol 
icy with respect to, 225; sent 
North, 226-227 

Fugitive Slave Law, the effect of, 
141 ; the law of 1850, 213-214 

Fuller, Meta V. W., a sculptor, 

Gaboons, 24 

Gabriels Insurrection, 92 

Gag rule, the adoption of, 197- 

Gage, Sir Thomas, quotation 
from, concerning the Black 
Corsair, 28-29 ; observer of ex 
ceptional slaves and Negroes, 

Gambia, the megaliths of, 8 ; 
English traders in, 21 ; Ne 
groes from, 24 

Garnett, Henry H.. a churchman 
and educator, 148-149 

Garrett, Thomas, an abolitionist, 

Garrison, William Lloyd, sup 
posed connection with Nat 
Turner, 94; humiliation and 
imprisonment of, 191; the an- 
tislavery efforts of, 169, 170, 
172; comment of, on the Con 
stitution, 194; reward offered 
for, 203; extracts from The 
Liberator of, 348-350 

Gaston, William, an antislavery 
man in North Carolina, 88 

Gay, Sydney Howard, an aboli 
tionist, 174 

George, James, an intelligent 
slave of, 44 

George III and the slave trade, 

Georgia, peonage in, 270 

Germans, influence of, 89 ; com 
petition of, with Negro labor 
ers, 97-98, 130 

Gerry, Elbridge, attitude of, to 
ward slavery, 73 

Ghana, the kingdom of, 9 

Gibbs, M. W., honorable record 
of, 253 

Giddings, Joshua R., an antislav 
ery congressman, 200 ; resolu 
tions of, on the mutiny of the 
Creole slaves, 211-212; the cen 
sure of, 211; the resignation 
of, 211; the return of, to Con 
gress, 212; remarks of, on 
slavery, 355-356, 358-359 

Godkin, E. L., comment of, on 
the internal slave trade, 101- 

Goodell, William, report of, on 
miscegenation, 112; an aboli 
tionist, 177 

Goodloe, Daniel R., position of 
with reference to teaching Ne 
groes, 06; a southern aboli 
tionist, 182 

Goodrich, William, a business 
man, 136 

Goodwyn, Morgan, appeal of, in 
behalf of slaves, 39 

Gordon, Robert, a successful Ne 
gro coal-dealer in Cincinnati, 



Gordon, William, interest of, in 
freedom, 54 

Gorsuch, the, killing of, 141 

Goybet, General, praise of, for 
Negro soldiers, 321-322 

Gradual emancipation becoming 
popular, 87-88 

Grant, U. S., attitude of, toward 
fugitive slaves, 224-225; the 
use of Negroes in the army by, 
230; report of, on the South, 

Greeks and the Negro, 5, 6 

Green, Augustus R., an advocate 
of colonization, 166 

Green, Samuel, imprisonment of, 

Greene, Anna, a white woman es 
caping with a Negro man, 46 

Greene, Colonel, defended by Ne 
gro soldiers, 65 

Greene, General, interest of, in 
the enlistment and freedom of 
the Negroes, 61 ; Negro sol 
diers under, during the Rev 
olutionary War, 65 

Greener, R. T., a reconstruction 
officeholder, 252; the educa 
tion of, 252 

Greer, Allan J., an officer arrayed 
against Negroes, 320 ; letter of, 
to Senator McKellar, 321 

Grimke, A. H., a protagonist in 
the struggle for social justice, 

Grimke sisters, abolitionists, 177 

Guatemala, a Negro freedman in, 
28; maroons in, 29-30 

Guinea, the Gulf of, 5 

Guinea Coast, slave trade on, 21 

Haiti, Negro insurrection in, 72- 
73; colonization in, 167, 168 

Hale, John P., an antislavery 
senator, 193 

Hale, Joseph, slave of, able to 
read and write, 42 

Hall, Basil, comment of, on the 
internal slave trade, 100 

Halleck, General, attitude of, to 
ward Negro fugitives, 224 

Hamilton, Alexander, interest of, 

in the freedom of the Negro, 
Hamlet, the fugitive, arrested, 

Hammon, Jupiter, a writer of 

verse, 301 

Hampton, fugitive slaves, in, 226 
Hampton Institute, the progress 

of, 288-289 

Hancock, John, opposition of, to 
the enlistment of Negro troops, 

Haralson, Jere, a member of Con 
gress, 249 

Harper, Chancellor, position of, 
on the teaching of Negroes, 
Harper, Frances E. W., a writer 

of verse, 301 
Harper, William A., a painter, 

Hardships of Negroes in the 

North, 130 

Harlan, Robert, a successful Ne 
gro in Ohio, 139 

Harris, Dr., opinion of, as to the 
valor of Negro soldiers in the 
American Revolution, 65 
Hart, A. B., quoted, 171 
Hartford, Connecticut, coloniza 
tion in, 162 

Hausa, the state of, 9, 10 
Haughtiness of the aristocratic 

class, 255-256 
Hawkins, Sir John, exploits of, 


Hayes, R. B., the withdrawal of 
the Federal troops by, 258-259 
Haynes, George E., head of the 
Bureau of Negro Economics in 
the Department of Labor, 316 
Haynes, Lemuel, a patriot and 
soldier of the American Revo 
lution, 58, 63 
Hayward, Colonel, a commander 

of Negro troops, 318 
Henson, Josiah, comment of, on 
the internal slave trade, 100- 
101 ; a promoter of the Under 
ground Railroad, 143 ; the pro 
totype of Uncle Tom s Cabin, 



Henry, Patrick, an advocate of 

freedom, 57 
Hermosa, The, freedom of the 

slaves of, 208 

Higher pursuits, slaves in, 44-45 
Higginson, T. W., a leader of Ne 

gro troops, 235 

Hill, of Chillicothe, a successful 
Negro, 138 

Hill, L. P., a writer, 303 

Hillsboro, Negro insurrection at, 

Hilyer, A. F., an inventor, 294 

Hispaniola, slave traders, 20 

Hoffman, Frederick L., interest 
of, in the study of the Negro, 

Hollie, Sallie, an abolitionist, 177 

Holly, J. T., a colonizationist, 
166, 167, 168; in Haiti, 168 

Homes of Negroes, improvements 
in, 287 

Hooter, H. E., an inventor, 296 

Hopkins, Samuel, interest of, in 
freedom, 54 

Hovey, Charles F., an abolition 
merchant, 174 

Howard, O. 0., head of the Freed- 
men s Bureau, 245-246; foun 
der of Howard University, 246, 

Howard University, the estab 
lishment of, 246 

Howells, W. D., a friend of Dun- 
bar, 301 

Hunter, Alexander, the purchase 
of a slave by, 127 

Hunter, Major General, the eman 
cipatory order of, 229; Ne 
groes armed by, 232 

Humphries, Solomon, a wealthy 
Negro, 129 

Hunton, William A., first Negro 
International Young Men s 
Christian Association Secre 
tary, 286 

Hyman, John A., a member of 
Congress, 249 

Impending Crisis, The, 216-217 
Indianapolis, segregation tenden 
cies in, 333 

Industrial revolution and the re 
action, 79-80 

Industrial Schools, Negro, the 
progress of, 288-289 

Inferiority of races, question of, 

Institutions of learning founded, 

Insurance companies controlled 
by Negroes, 292 

Insult to Negro army officers, 

Insurrection of the Negroes dur 
ing the early periods in the 
colonies, 36-37; in the West 
Indies, 72-73; in the United 
States, 92-94 

Intellectual development, 41-42, 

Interbreeding, 133 

Interest, differing, of the sections, 

Internal improvements, the ques 
tion of, 123 

Internal slave trade, 99-102 

International entanglements, 208- 

Interstate slave trade, 104 ; the 
regulation of, 103 

Intimidation of Negroes in the 
South, 244 

Inventions of Negroes, 109, 110, 
111, 293; the difficulties of, 

Investigation of social problems 
a necessity, 341 

Investigators, biased, 339-340 

Irish Nell, marriage of, to a Ne 

gro slave, 47 
Irish in 

the North, competition 
of, with Negro laborers, 97-98, 

Irrepressible Conflict, The, of 
William H. Seward, 363-365 

Isabella, Queen, attitude of, to 
ward slavery, 19 

Jackson, Benjamin F., an inven 
tor, 294 

Jackson, Francis, an abolitionist, 

Jackson, May Howard, a sculp 
tor, 299 



Jacobs, Governor R. T., pardon of 
Fairbanks, by, 88 

Jamaica, Francis Williams, the 
scholar, in, 29 ; agents from, 
in quest of Negro immigrants, 

James, David, an illegitimate mu 
latto bound out, 48 

Jameson, J. F., interest of, in the 
study of the Negro, 342 

Jay, William, the enemy of colo 
nization, 96-97 ; thought of, on 
miscegenation, 187 ; opinion of, 
as to the Constitution, 194 

Jefferson, Thomas, an opponent 
of slavery, 57-58; message to 
Congress concerning, 81 ; his 
fear of the evil, 90 ; interest 
of, in colonization, 155; corre 
spondence of, with Banneker, 

Jenkins, David, a successful Ne 
gro in Ohio, 138 

Jenne, the state of, 10 

Jerry, the fugitive arrested in 
Syracuse, 141 

Johnson, Andrew, acceptance of 
Lincoln s reconstruction plan 
by, 241-242 

Johnson, Georgia Douglas, a 
poet, 303 

Johnson, James Weldon, a writer, 

Johnson, Oliver, an abolitionist, 

Johnson, William H., an inven 
tor, 296 

Johnson, a hero of the World 
War, 325 

Johnson, General, the attitude of, 
toward fugitive slaves, 224 

Jones, C. C., interest of, in the 

instruction of Negroes, 97 
Judson, Andrew T., the decision 
of, in the Amistad Case, 209 

Kansas-Nebraska question, 214 
Kansas Colored Volunteers, 232 
Keith, George, interest of, in the 

instruction of Negroes, 39; in 

colonization, 154 
Kemble, Frances, an antislavery 

writer, 185 

Kench, Thomas, interest of, in 

the enlistment of Negroes, 63 
Kentucky, failure of, to prohibit 

the teaching of Negroes, 96 
Key, Francis Scott, a promoter 

of colonization, 157 
Koch, Bernard, the agent of the 

colonizationists of the Civil 

War period, 227-228; governor 

of the A Vache colony, 227- 

Kreamer, Henry, an inventor, 

Ku Klux Klan, the operations of, 

256-258, 269 ; recrudescence of, 


Labor a factor in the Negro sit 
uation, 306-307 
Loyalty of Negroes, 313, 314, 


Lafayette, Marquis de, opinion of 
as to the valor of Negro sol 
diers, 65 
Lafon, Thorny, a wealthy Negro, 

Lago, William, the indictment of, 

in Kentucky, 203 
Lambert, William, a colonization- 

ist, 166 
L Amistad, the freedom of the 

slaves of, 209 
Lane, Lunsford, an antislavery 

lecturer, 176, 179 
Lane Theological Seminary, anti- 
slavery, 184 

Langston, J. M., a member of 
Congress, 249; the education 
of, 251 

Latimer Case, the, 206-207 
Last words of John Brown, 367- 

Latins, the enlightenment of 

slaves among, 26 
Latrobe, J. H. B., a factor in 

colonization, 159 
Laurens, Henry, the proposal of, 
for enlisting and freeing Ne 
groes, 58, 62 
Law, Josiah, interest of, in the 

instruction of Negroes, 97 
Lawrence, Samuel, rescue of, by 
Negroes, 58 



Lay, Benjamin, attack of, on 
slavery, 53-54 

Leadership, trained, 200 

Leavitt, Joshua, an abolitionist, 

Lecky s opinion of the valor of 
Negro soldiers mentioned, 65 

Lecturers, antislavery, 175-177 

Lee, Joseph, an inventor, 206 

Le Jeune, Paul, a missionary, 39 

Leonard, James, an intelligent 
slave of, 44 

Le Petit, a missionary, 39 

Lewis, Edmonia, the artist, 148 

Lewis, John W., a Negro busi 
ness man, 202 

Liberator, The, the influence of, 
170, 171; beginnings of the, 

Liberia, the exodus of Negroes 
to, 128 

Liele, George, a pioneer preacher, 

Lincoln, Abraham, the slavery 
issue by, 215, 216, 221, 228; 
interest of in compensated 
emancipation, 221 ; policy of, in 
dealing with fugitive slaves, 
225; interest of, in freedmen, 
227,240; emancipation by, 229- 
230; powers of, 238-230; plan 
of, for reconstruction, 239-240 ; 
comment of, on lynching, 370- 

Long, Jefferson F., a member of 
Congress, 249 

Longfellow, H. W., antislavery 
writings of, 185 

Louisiana, reconstruction of, 241 

Louisiana Purchase, the, and 
slavery, 78-70 

L Ouverture, Toussaint, leader of 
the insurrection in Haiti, 72 

Lovejoy, Elijah P., the murder 
of, 102, 215 

Lowden, Fred J., an inventor, 206 

Lowell, J. R., the antislavery 
writings of, 185 

Lundy, Benjamin, an abolition 
ist, 182 

Lundy, Benjamin, a gradual 
emancipationist, 89; a coloni- 
zationist, 15C 

Lynch, John R., a member of 
Congress, 249; the education 
of, 251 

Lynching on the increase, 261 ; in 
Washington, 327-328; remarks 
of Lincoln on, 369, 371 

McCook, General, attitude of, to 
ward the fugitive slaves, 224 

McCoy, Elijah J., an inventor, 

McCrummell, James, the opposi 
tion to colonization, 162 

McHenry, James, a friend of 
Benjamin Banneker, 70 

McKellar, Senator K. D., the let 
ter of Allan J. Greer to, 320 

McKim, an agent of the Under 
ground Railroad, 177 

Madison, James, suggestion as to 
emancipation, 62 

Madison, James, the complaint 
of the sister of, as to miscege 
nation, 111-112 

Madison, W. G., an inventor, 296 

Mahan, Asa, an antislavery stu 
dent at Lane Seminary, 184: 
one of the founders of Oberlin 
College, 184; indictment of, in 
Kentucky, 203 

Mail, the use of, in reaching Ne 
groes, 203 

Major, John, the murder of, by 
slaves, 36 

Mansfield, Lord, the Somerset de 
cision of, 38 

Manumission after the French 
and Indian War, 54-55; in the 
Middle States, 54, 55 

March, Charles, a colonizationist, 

Marcy, Governor, attitude of, to 
ward the fugitive, 203 

Maroons, the, 30-31 ; in Guate 
mala, 29-30 

Martin, Samuel, a Negro slave 
holder, 128 

Martin, Asa, estimate of the ex 
tent of the internal slave trade 
by, 102 

Martineau, Harriet, a case of 
miscegenation observed by, 112 



Maryland, failure of, to prohibit 

the teaching of Negroes, 96 
Maryland, miscegenation in, 46- 

47; free Negroes sold in, 130 
Maryville College, antislavery, 

Mason, George, an advocate of 

freedom, 58 

Massachusetts, Negroes of, leave 
for Canada, 141; the uprising 
of slaves in, 36; protest of, 
against the enlistment of Ne 
groes in the American Revolu 
tion, 58 

Massacres of Negroes, 261 
Matilda, the question as to the 

freedom of, 206 
Matthews, W. D., a Negro officer, 


Matzeliger, Jan E., a noted Ne 
gro inventor, 293; results from 
patent of, 293-294 
May, Thomas, an intelligent slave 

of, 42 
May, Samuel, Jr., an abolitionist, 

May, Samuel J., an abolitionist, 

174, 175 
Measurements, psychological, 340- 


Mechanics, Negro, 115 
Mecklin, John M., interest of, in 

the study of the Negro, 342 
Mediterranean world, Negroes in, 

6, 7, 8 

Melle, the kingdom of, 9-10 
Memphis, fugitive slaves in, 226 
Menial service of Negroes in the 

North, 274 

Mendez, exploits of, 21 
Mercer County, Ohio, the Negroes 

in, 139 
Mercer, Charles Fenton, interest 

of, in colonization, 157 
Merrick, John, a business man, 


Methodists, opposition of, to slav 
ery, 56 

Metoyer, Marie, a negro slave 
holder, 129 

Mexico, the organization of ter 
ritory acquired from, 213; Ne 
gro colonists in, 269 

Middle States, slavery in, 35-36; 
Manumission in, 54 

Miflin, Ann, interest of, in colo 
nization, 155-156 

Migration of the Negroes to the 
North, 265-266, 306-310; causes 
of, 309-310 

Military districts in the South 

Mild attack on slavery, 87 

Miller, Kelly, an educator, 267 

Miller, Matthew, opinion of, as 
to Negro troops, 236 

Miller, Thomas E., a member of 
Congress, 251 

Milligan Case, the, 236 

Mills, Elijah J., a promoter of 
colonization, 157 

Mills, Samuel J., a colonization- 
ist, 157 

Miner, Myrtilla, the work of, 144 

Minor, Patrick A., a Negro offi 
cer, 234 

Miscegenation of the whites and 
blacks, 45-50, 133; danger of, 
50; cases of, 111-112 

Mississippi, peonage in, 270 

Missouri Compromise, 120-121; 
comment on, by J. Q. Adams, 
343-344; remarks of John Ser 
geant on, 344-346 

Mobile, Alabama, the Negroes of, 
protected by the Louisiana Pur 
chase Treaty, 78-79 

Mohammed Askia, 11 

Mohammedans in Africa, 8, 9, 10, 
11, 12, 15, 16, 17 

Molson, Richard, the escape of 
the slave of, with a white 
woman, 46 

Montgomery, Benjamin T., an in 
ventor, 111 

Montgomery, Isaiah T., experi 
ences of, as a slave, 106; a 
business man, 292 

Monroe, President, interest of, in 

colonization, 159 
Moore, William, intelligent slave 

of, 42 

Morgan, John, an antislavery 
student at Lane Seminary, 



184; one of the founders of 

Oberlin College, 184 
Morgan, Senator, interest of, in 

colonization, 268-269 
Morris, Thomas, an antislavery 

congressman, 193 
Moton, R. R., the head of Tuske- 

gee, 291 
Mott, Lucretia, an abolitionist, 


Mott, James, an abolitionist, 177 
Mound Bayou, the home of a for 
mer slave, 106 
Mulattoes, 133 
Mulber, Luke, a successful Negro 

in Ohio, 138 

Murray, George W., a member of 
Congress, 251; an inventor, 294 
Mustees, 133 

Nagoes, 24 

Nash, Charles E., a member of 
Congress, 249 

National Association for the Ad 
vancement of Colored People, 
the work of the, 277-278 

National Association of Funeral 
Directors, 292 

National Negro Bankers Asso 
ciation, 292 

National Negro Retail Merchants 
Association, 292 

Negro, the, enslaved, 15-34; the 
rights of man and the, 51-52; 
status of, reduced, 86, 87; in 
the Civil War, 221-238; in the 
World War, 305-328; the, and 
social justice, 328-342 

Negro contrabands, the record of, 

Negro Churches, 117 

Negro preachers, 117 

Negro soldiers, enlisted in Vir 
ginia, 61 ; in Rhode Island, 62- 
63; in New York, 63; in New 
Hampshire, 63; in Maryland, 
63; opinions as to service of, 

Negro units proposed for the 
American Revolutionary forces, 
58-59; protest against, 58-59; 
decision against, 59; fear of, 
60-61 ; armed by British, 60-62 

Negroes as refugees during the 
Civil War, 223-230; loyal to 
the United States, 313-314 

Nell, Irish, marriage of, to a 
slave, 47 

Nell, William C., a Negro his 
torian, 145-146 

Newberne, Negro insurrection at, 

New England, slavery in, 35 

New England and secession, 219 

New Orleans, Haitian refugees in, 

New York City, the Negro riot 
in, 37, 98 ; miscegenation in, 
49; colonization in, 161, 162, 
163 ; antislavery society in, 
171-172; anti-abolition move 
ment in, 191; the fugitive ques 
tion in, 203 

New York Fifteenth, 318 

Niger, the, 2, 8; Martin R. De- 
laney in the valley of, 167-168 

Nile, the, 2, 6, 7 

Niles, Hezekiah, a promoter of 
colonization, 157 

Niles, Nathaniel, interest of, in 
freedom, 54 

Ninety-second Division, of Negro 
soldiers, 318 

Norfolk, Haitian refugees at, 72 

North, reaction against the Ne 
gro in, 76-77 ; the free Negroes 
in, 129-137; fugitives in, 226- 
227; the migration of Negroes 
to, 271-272, 306-310; the ad 
vantages of Negroes in, 307, 
308; troubles of Negroes in, 
310-311; the recent situation 
in, 331 

North Carolina, miscegenation 
in, 48-49; Negro voters in, 67; 
peonage in, 270 
Numantia, the Negro, 31-33 

Oberlin College, the establish 
ment of, 184 

Officers, Negro, the demand for, 
316-317 ; discrimination against, 
317-325; training of, at Des 
Moines, 317-318; praised by 
French, 321-322 



Ogden, Robert C., a philanthro 
pist, 289 

O Hara, James E., a member of 
Congress, 249 ; the education 
of, 251 

Ohio, the question of fugitives 
in, 203; anti-Negro laws of, 

Opposition to slavery, 216-217 

Oppression a cause of migration, 

Ordinance of 1787, the emancipa 
tory clause of, 66, 73, 120 

Ordingsell, Anthony, the sale of 
a slave by, 127 

Otis, James, an advocate of free 
dom, 57 

Outcast, the free Negro an, 132- 

Paine, L. W., the imprisonment 
of, 188 

Palmares, the Negro Numantia, 
31-33; the destruction of, 33 

Palmyra, riot at, 98 

Parker, John T., an inventor, 296 

Pawpaws, 24 

Paxton, John D., the attack of, 
on slavery, 90 

Payne, Daniel A., a churchman, 

Pelham, Robert A., an inventor, 

Penn, William, the owner of 
slaves, 35 

Pennington, J. W. C., a church 
man, 149-150 

Pennsylvania, miscegenation in, 
49-50; anti-abolition riots in, 

Pennsylvania Society for the 
Abolition of Slavery, memorial 
of, to Congress, 75; action 
taken thereon, 75-77 

Peonage, 270-271 

Pernambuco and Palmares, 31-33 

Perry, Heman, a business man, 

Personal liberty laws, 112-113, 

Phelps, J. W., the arming of Ne 
groes, undertaken by, 232 

Philadelphia, miscegenation in, 
49 ; manumission promoted in, 
54; riot in, 98; progress, of 
free Negroes in, 136; segrega 
tion tendencies in, 333 

Philanthropist, The, 184 

Phillips, Wendell, an antislavery 
orator, 172, 174; attitude of, 
toward the Constitution, 216 

Physicians, Negro, 285 

Pick ens, William, an orator, 267, 

Pickering, J. L., an inventor, 296 

Pinchback, P. B. S., a reconstruc 
tion officeholder, 252; the edu 
cation of, 252; record of, 254 

Piracy, 21 

Pittsburg, riot in, 98; segrega 
tion tendencies in, 333 

Plantation system as a result 
from the industrial revolution, 
79-80, 105, 106, 107 

Platt, William, a successful free 
Negro, 135 

Politics and slavery in the South, 

Politicians, Negro, leaving the 
South, 272 

Polk, Bishop, interest of, in the 
instruction of Negroes, 97 

Popular sovereignty, 214 

Portsmouth, Ohio, riot at, 98, 
140 ; fugitive slaves in, 226 

Port Royal, South Carolina, fugi 
tive slaves in, 226 

Portugal, slaves in, 1 

Poore, Salem, exploits of, 58 

Potomac, the bravery of Negroes 
along, 236 

Powell, William, a Negro sur 
geon, 234 

Prejudice a factor in the South, 
254; in the army, 323 

Preparation of slaves for eman 
cipation, 67-68 

Presbyterians, opposition of, to 
slavery, 56 

Presley, J., a successful Negro in 
Ohio, 139 

Price, J. C., an orator and edu 
cator, 266 

Prigg Case, the, 206 



Prince Henry, explorations of, 19 
Privileges of free Negroes, 131- 


Professions, Negroes in, 283-284 
Progress of the Negro race, statis 
tics on, 280-283 ; of the Church, 
Promoters of colonization, 154- 

Property of Negroes, the worth 

of, 292 

Proslavery argument, 52-53 
Proslayery victory in the mild 
prohibition of the slave trade, 

Protest, further, 182-194 
Proverbs, African, 12-14 
Punishment of slaves, 108 
Puritans, attitude of, toward 

slavery, 52 

Pursuits, higher, slaves in, 44-45 
Purvis, Robert, opposition of, to 

colonization, 162 
Purvis, Charles B., a Negro sur 
geon, 234 
Purvis, W. B., an inventor, 294 

Quakers, attitude of, toward slav 
ery, 52, 54; memorial of, to 
Congress, 74, 75, 76; opposi 
tion of, to slavery continued, 
88 ; interest of, in colonization, 

Quincy, Edmund, an abolitionist, 

Quinn, William P., a minister, 

Races in Africa, 1-14 

Race riot in Washington, 326- 

Radical leaders of poor whites, 

Rainey, J. H., a member of Con 
gress, 249 

Randolph, John, the attitude of, 
toward the slave trade, 82; 
comment of, on slavery, 90; on 
colonization, 157 

Rankin, John, an antislavery 
leader in the Western Reserve, 
184; comment of, on miscege 
nation, 187 

Ransier, Alonzo J., a member of 
Congress, 251 

Rapier, James T., a member of 
Congress, 249; the education 
of, 251 

Rapier, John, a Negro surgeon, 

Rappahannock River, the rising 
of slaves oil, 36 

Ray, Charles B., a churchman, 
148 ; letter of, Gerrit Smitli to, 

Ray, Robert, opposition of, to 
colonization, 162 

Raymond, Daniel, the opposition 
of, to slavery, 90 

Reaction against the Negro, 71- 
85; in the North, 97-98 

Reason, Charles L., a scholar, 148 

Rebellion of the Negroes in the 
West Indies, 72-73 

Reconstruction of the Southern 
States, 239-259; various theo 
ries about, 242; the plan of 
Congress for, 246-248; the un 
doing of, 259 

Redpath, James, a colonization- 
ist, 168 

Reed, William N., a Negro offi 
cer, 233-234 

Refugees, Haitian, in United 
States, 72-73; influence of, 92- 

Religious bodies opposed to slav- 
ery, 51-52 

Religious freedom, the bearing 
of, on the emancipation of the 
Negroes, 67-68 

Removal of a slave to a free 
State, the effect of, 205; in 
Pennsylvania, 205; in Massa 
chusetts, 205 

Remond, Charles Lenox, an an 
tislavery lecturer, 178-179, 180 

Rent system for the freedmen, 

Republican Party, the organiza 
tion of, 217 

Relations of slaves and free Ne 
groes, 133-134 

Religious instruction limited, 116- 



Restored South, 268; the cruelty 

of, 268 
Resignation of Negroes to fate, 

Restrictions on manumissions, 

128; on free Negroes, 130-131 
Return of Negroes to the South, 


Return of fugitives, the constitu 
tional question of, 200-202 
Revels, Hiram R., a member of 
the United States Senate, 249; 
the education of, 251 
Rhett, of South Carolina, in the 

defense of slavery, 198 
Ricard, Cyprian, a wealthy Ne 
gro, 129 
Richardson, Richard, the sale of 

a slave by, 127 
Richards, Benjamin, a business 

man, 136 
Richey, Charles V., an inventor, 

Riddell, W. R., interest of, in the 

study of the Negro, 342 
Right of petition denied, 195-198 
Rights of man and the Negro, 

Rillieux, Norbert, an inventor, 


Riots of Negroes with Irish and 
Germans in the North, 98, 140- 

Rise, the, of the poor whites, 330 
Roberts, a hero of the World 

War, 325 

Robinson, E. A., an inventor, 298 
Rockefeller, John D., a philan 
thropist, 298 

Rockefeller, John D., Jr., inter 
est of, in the study of the Ne 
gro, 342 
Rogers, H. H., a philanthropist, 

Rogers, N. P., an abolitionist, 


Roques, Charles, a Negro slave 
holder, 129 

Rosenwald, Julius, a philanthro 
pist, 289; interest of, in the 
study of the Negro, 342 
Royal African Company, 21 

Ruffner, effort of, for Negro edu 
cator, 288 

Ruggles, David, a leader in the 
crisis, 149 

Rush of Negroes to cities, the, 
272, 273 

Russwurm, John B., the first Ne 
gro college graduate in the 
United States, 144-145; a colo- 
nizationist, 159, 160 

Rutherford, S. W., a Negro busi 
ness man, 292 

Rutledge, Governor, a Negro slave 
of, distinguished by his valor, 

Salem, Peter, the killing of Ma 
jor Pitcairn by, 58 
Sandiford, Ralph, attack of, on 

slavery, 53 
Sandoval, Alphonso, protest of, 

Sandy Lake, the settlement of, 

broken up, 141 

Santo Domingo, Negro insurrec 
tion in, 72; sought as a place 
for colonization, 165 

Savannah, Georgia, the uprising 
of slaves at, 36 

Schools, Negro, the progress of 

Schurz, Carl, report of, on the 
South, 242-243 

Scotch-Irish, influence of, 89 

Scott, Emmett J., Special Assis 
tant to the Secretary of War, 
316, 318 

Scott, George, the self-assertion 
of the slaves of, 36 

Scott, Henry, a successful Negro, 

Scott, William E., a painter, 299 

Seamen Acts of South Carolina, 

Searching the mails, 205 

Secession undertaken, 217. 218, 

Secret Information concerning 
Black American Troops, 323- 

Senegal, traders on, 21 ; coloniza 
tion on the, 159 

Segregation, the results of, 338 



Sergeant, John, remarks of, on 
the Missouri Compromise, 344- 

Servants indentured, 17, 18 

Service of Negro troops, 234-236 

Settlements of Negroes broken 
up, 140-141 

Sevilla, slaves in, 19 

Seward, W. H., attitude of, to 
ward the fugitive, 202; an an- 
tislavery leader in Congress, 
216; counsel in the John Van 
Zandt case, 206; Higher Law 
than the Constitution of, 359- 
361; Irrepressible Conflict of, 

Shadrach, the fugitive, arrested, 

Sharp, Granville, attorney in the 
Somerset case, 38; interest of, 
in colonization, 155 

Shaw, John, refusal of, to grant 
a writ for the freedom of a 
fugitive, 206 

Shaw, R. G., a commander of Ne 
gro troops, 235 

Shellabarger, reconstruction plan, 
of, 242 

Sherbro, the figures of, 8, 9 

Singleton, Benjamin, a leader of 
Negro migrants, 264 

Simms, Thomas, the fugitive ar 
rested, 142 

Simpson, William H., a painter, 

Skilled labor, 281-282 

Slade, William, an antislavery 
congressman, 193 

Slander, a bold, 323-325 

Slavebreeding, 102 

Slave trade, 16, 17; the horrors 
of, 22, 24; in the South, 72; 
efforts to stop the, 80-82 

Slave trading corporations, 21 

Slavery, ancient, 15; Mohamme 
dan, 15, 16, 17; Christian, 18; 
European, 18, 19; the intro 
duction of, in America, 21 ; in 
its mild form, 34-50; slavery 
in the North, 35; in New Eng 
land, 35 ; in the Middle States, 
35-36; slavery in England, 38; 
in the eighteenth century, 40; 

early objections to, 51-52; as 
affected by the Louisiana Pur 
chase Treaty, 78-79; the effect 
of, on the South, 117-118; with 
respect to the tariff, 121-122: 
attacked as an evil, 170; with 
respect to the Constitution, 
195; in politics, 217; the de 
fense of, by J. C. Calhoun, 346- 
348; the comment of J. Q. 
Adams on, 353-354 ; remarks of 
J. R. Giddings on, 355-356, 
358-359; comment of A. Lin 
coln on, 361-362; remarks of 
B. F. Wade on, 365-367 

Slavers, 22 

Slaves, brought to the West In 
dies, 23; source of, 24-25; 
hardships of, 25-26; the en 
lightenment of, among the Lat 
ins, 26 ; able to read and 
write, 42-43; well-dressed, 43; 
slaves in good circumstances, 
44; slaves in higher pursuits, 
44-45; relation with poor 
whites, 45-46 ; sold South, 103- 
104, 105; control of, 106; the 
care of, 107; the punishment 
of, 108; in towns, 114-115; re 
lations of, with free Negroes, 

Smalls, Robert, a member of Con 
gress, 251 

Smart, Brinay, an inventor, 296 

Smilie, of Pennsylvania, the ef 
fort of, against the slave trade, 

Smith, Gerrit, the antislavery ef 
forts of, 185-186 

Smith, James, an inventor, 296 

Smith, James McCune, a Negro 
physician in New York, 145; 
letter of G. Smith to, 186 

Smith, R. L., a business man, 292 

Smith, Stephen, a lumber mer 
chant, 136 

Social relations of Negroes and 
whites, 111, 116 

Society for the Propagation of 
the Gospel in Foreign Parts, 

Soldiers, Negro, in the World 



War, 314-325; restriction of, in 
the service, 314-315; assign 
ment of, to labor divisions, 
315-316; the abuse of, 315-316; 
the record of, 325 

Somerset decision, 38 

Songhay, the empire, of 11-12 

Soni Ali, 11 

South, the situation in, after the 
reaction, 84-85; affected by 
slavery, 117-119; the last stand 
of, 217-218; under martial law, 
247 ; the exodus of Negroes 
from, a calamity, 312-313; rad 
ical reaction in, after the 
World War, 339 

South Carolina, the reopening of 
the slave trade by, 80-81; se 
cession of, 217 ; peonage in, 

Southern matron, the appeal of 
a, 351-352 

Southern States, the adoption of 
different plans by, 247-248 

Spain, African slaves in, 18, 19 

Spingarn, J. E., a friend of the 
oppressed, 278 

State, limitations on a, 119-120 

Statistics on free Negroes, 124- 
126; on the progress of, 138- 
140, 281-283; on the Negro 
Church, 284-285 

Stebbins, Charles B., an aboli 
tionist, 177 

Stiles, Ezra, interest of, in free 
dom, 54 

Still, William, an agent of the 
Underground Railroad, 143 

Stone, Daniel, an opponent of 
slavery, 215 

Stone, Lucy, an abolitionist, 176 

Storey, Moorfield, a friend of the 
oppressed, 278 

Stowe, Harriet Beecher, the writ 
ings of, 152 

Stringent measures in the South, 

Study of the Negro, the, under 
taken, 341-342 

Sudan, the empires of, 7 

Suffolk, fugitive slaves in, 226 

Sugar industry and slavery, 84 

Sumner, Charles, opinion of, on 

the mutiny of the Creole slaves, 
210; reconstruction ideas of, 
242; interest of, in the f reed- 
men, 245; on equality before 
the law, 356-358 

Suttle, Charles F., claimant of 
Anthony Burns, 142 

Talmadge, James, effort of, to 

prevent slavery in Missouri, 


Tanner, H. 0., a renowned paint 
er, 299-300; paintings of, 299- 

300; prizes of, 299-300 
Tappan, Arthur, an abolitionist, 

185; a reward offered for, 203 
Tappan, Lewis, an abolitionist, 

171, 185 

Tariff and slavery, 121-122; op 
position to the tariff, 122 
Tarboro, Negro insurrection at, 

Taxation during the Civil War, 

Tennessee, failure of, to prohibit 

the teaching of Negroes, 96 
Tennessee, the reconstruction of, 


Ten per cent governments, 240 
Terrell, Frank J., an inventor, 


Terrorism in the South, 269 
Texas, slavery and, 200; sought 

as a place for colonization, 

165; the claims of, 213 
Thirteenth Amendment, 238, 241 
Thompson, A. V., a successful 

Negro in Ohio, 139 
Thompson, George, lecture of, 

stopped by mob, 191 
Thompson, the imprisonment of, 

Tillman, Benjamin, a leader of 

the poor whites, 330 
Tilghman, Richard, the escape of 

the slave of, with a white 

woman, 46 

Timbuctu, the city of, 10 
Toleration and the Negro, 55 
Topp, Henry, a successful Negro, 

Torrey, C. T., imprisonment of, 




Town slaves, 114-115 

Traders, slave, 19-20 

Trades unions and the Negro, 
273, 334-337 

Trinidad, colonization in, 164- 

Troops, Federal, in the South, 
258; the withdrawal of, 258- 

Troops, Negro, the use of, 233- 
234; the status of, 234; the 
record of, 234-236 

Trotter, W. M., a leader opposed 
to Booker. T. Washington s pol 
icies, 277; the humiliation of, 

Truth, Sojourner, an antislavery 
lecturer, 179 

Tubman, Harriett, the career of, 
115; a promoter of the Under 
ground Railroad, 143 

Tucker, Alpheus, a Negro sur 
geon, 234 

Tupes, Colonel, praise of, for Ne 
gro soldiers, 321-322 

Turner, Benjamin, a member of 
Congress, 249 ; education of, 

Turner, Franklin, an advocate of 
colonization, 166 

Turner, Bishop H. M., interest of, 
in col&nization, 268-269 

Turner, Nat, insurrection of, 93- 

Tuscaloosa County, the indict 
ment of R. G. Williams by, 203 

Tuskegee, the progress of, 288- 

Tyler, Ralph, a war correspon 
dent, 320 

Uncle Tom s Cabin, 152, 217 
Underground Railroad, 113-114, 

142-143, 152 
Union, the nature of, 122, 218- 

219; the cause of, at first a 

failure, 156 

Union Humane Society, 156 
Usher, Roland G., interest of, in 

the study of the Negro, 342 
Unskilled labor, 281 
Untoward condition of the freed- 

men, 260-261 ; economic situa 
tion, 261-262 
Unwilling South, the, 242-243 

Vagrancy laws of the South, 244 

Valladolid, Juan de, 19 

Van Zandt, John, the fine of, 206 

Van Buren, attitude of, in the 
L Amistad case, 210 

Vardaman, J. K., a leader of the 
poor whites, 330 

Varick, James, founder of the A. 
M. E. Zion Church, 77-78 

Varnum, General, enlistment of 
Negroes by, 62-63 

Vasa, Gustavus, 13 

Vashon, George B., a lawyer, 148 

Vermont, the fugitive in, 206 

Vesey, Denmark, leader of an in 
surrection, 93 

Vicksburg, meeting at, to check 
the exodus of 1879, 264 

Villard, 0. G., grandson of Wil 
liam Lloyd Garrison, 278; in 
terest of, in the study of the 
Negro, 342 

Virginia and Kentucky Resolu 
tions, the bearing of, on seces 
sion, 219 

Virginia, miscegenation in, 47-48 

Wade, Benjamin F., the defiant 

unionist, 219; attack of, on 

slavery, 365-367 
Wage system for the freedmen, 

Wainrite, Anne, escape of, with 

a negro woman, 46 
Walker, Madame C. J., a business 

woman, 292 
Walker, David, appeal of, 93, 95 ; 

connection of, with the Nat 

Turner insurrection questioned, 


Walker, John, suffering of, 188 
Wall, 0. S. B., a Negro officer, 

Walls, Josiah T., a member of 

Congress, 249 
Ward, Joseph, the opposition of, 

to the enlistment of Negro 

troops, 59 



Ward, S. R., a minister and ora 
tor of power, 149, 151 

Washington, Booker T., the pol 
icy of, 274; the Atlanta ad 
dress of, 274-275; ideas of, ac 
cepted, 275; opposition to, 276; 
the results of the work of, 279 ; 
a writer, 301 

Washington, Bushrod, a promot 
er of colonization, 158 

Washington, George, order of, to 
stop the enlistment of Negro 
troops, 59 ; revocation of the 
order, 61 ; the enlistment of 
Negroes by, 61 ; interest of, in 
emancipation, 58 

Washington, fugitive slaves in, 
226; race riot in, 326-327; a 
lynching, 327-328 

Watrum, F. P., a missionary, 39 

Wayman, Alexander W., a church 
man, 148 

W 7 ebb, William, an advocate of 
colonization but not of African 
deportation, 166 

W T ebster, Delia, the imprison 
ment of, 188 

Webster, Daniel, the evasive po 
sition of, 198-199; opinion of, 
on the Creole slaves, 210 

Webster, Samuel, interest of, in 
freedom, 54 

Weld, T. F., an antislavery stu 
dent at Lane Seminary, 184; 
an abolitionist, 177 

Wesley, Charles H., interest of, 
in the study of the Negro, 342 

Wesley, John, opposition of, to 
slavery, 56 

W T est Indies, slaves carried to, 
23; the lot of slaves in, 25, 26 

Wheatley, Phyllis, a writer of 
verse, 68, 301 

Wheeler, John H., the escape of 
the slave of, 205 

Whipper, William, the agent of 
the Underground Railroad, 143 

White, George H., a member of 
Congress, 249 

White, J. T., honorable record 
of, 253 

Whitfield, James M., a writor of 

verse, 148 ; an advocate of colo 
nization, 166, 167 

Whittier, John G., the antislav 
ery writings of, 185 

Whydahs, 24 

Wilberforce, the antislavery ef 
forts of, 165 

Wilcox, Samuel T., a Negro gro 
cer in, Cincinnati, 139 

W T illiams, Francis, the scholar, 

Williams, G. W., an historian, 

Williams, John, intelligent slave 
of, 42 

Williams, Peter, a churchman, 

Williams, Roger, protest of, 
against slavery, 52 

Williams, R. G., the indictment 
of, in Alabama, 203 

Williamsburg, Virginia, an in 
surrection of slaves in, 36 

Williamson, Passmore, efforts of, 
to obtain the freedom of Jane 
Johnson, 205 

Willis, Joseph, organizer of Bap 
tist churches in Mississippi, 77 

Wilmot Proviso, the, 212 

Wilson, Henry, reconstruction 
ideas of, 242 

Wilson, Hiram, a worker among 
Canadian Negroes, 152 

Winslow, Sydney W., the pur 
chaser of Matzeliger s patent, 

Wise, Henry A., the defense of 
slavery by, 196-197 

Woods, Granville T., an inventor, 

Woods, Lyates, an inventor, 297 

Woodson, C. G., founder of the 
Association for the Study of 
Negro Life and History, 341 

Woolman, John, a Friend plead 
ing the cause of the Negro, 56 

Work, F. W., a musician, 298- 

Work, J. W., a musician, 298 

W^orld War, the Negro soldiers 
in, 305-328 

Wright, Elizur, an abolitionist, 
171 : an instructor, 184 



Wright, Henry C., an abolition 
ist, 177 

Wright, Theodore S., letter of 
Gerrit Smith to, 186 

Wythe, George, an advocate of 
freedom, 58 

Yorktown, fugitive slaves in, 

Young, Colonel Charles, the pro 
scription of, 317-318 

Young Men s Christian Associa 
tion, the work of, among Ne 
groes, 286-287 

Young Women s Christian Asso 
ciation, the work of, among 
Negroes, 287 

Zambezi, the, 2 





FEB 3 3 J995 


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^R 0/7997 

MAR 1 7 200? 


JAN tf 2 *yy3